Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski on Governor Cuomoís Hepatitis C Elimination Task Force
ďAs someone that has been personally invested in ending the Hepatitis C virus, I am incredibly grateful and pleased by the Governorís announcement of a Hepatitis C Elimination Task Force in NYS.
Hepatitis C is a silent disease that has become a growing epidemic in the State and the Nation. More than 200,000 New Yorkers have Hepatitis C (HCV) with the disease disproportionately affecting baby boomers, and a recent significant increase in cases in light of the opioid crisis.
For years, Iíve worked to raise awareness and have fought to expand testing opportunities. I drafted and passed the first birth cohort HCV testing law in the nation; requiring primary care doctors to offer baby boomer patients a one-time Hepatitis C test. I am very proud that my law has become a public health strategy that the Center for Disease Control has endorsed. Throughout my time in the Assembly, Iíve constantly pushed for increased funding for prevention and treatment services to fully address this crisis.
This task force is the type of comprehensive approach that the State needs to address this silent epidemic. Increased funding will help prevention efforts, removing insurance barriers will improve access to care and lifesaving treatment, and a large-scale multimedia awareness campaign will help spread public awareness.
Hepatitis C is a curable disease. We must do everything in our power to diagnose and help those seeking treatment. Iíd like to thank Governor Cuomo for his dedication on this issue. I look forward to continuing to advocate for patients and ending Hepatitis C in New York State once and for all.Ē