Publications & Reports

HIV and hepatitis C treatment uptake among people who use drugs participating in the Amsterdam Cohort Studies, 1985-2015.

Daniela K van Santen, Jannie J van der Helm, Karen Lindenburg, Maarten Schim van der Loeff, Maria Prins
Department of Infectious Disease Research and Prevention, Public Health Service of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Electronic address: [email protected]


BACKGROUND: HIV-positive people who use drugs (PWUD) start antiretroviral therapy (ART) later than other risk groups, and among HCV-positive PWUD, HCV treatment uptake is low. Nowadays, HCV direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) are available and reimbursed in the Netherlands (since 2014). The Amsterdam Cohort Studies (ACS), initiated in 1985, provides us the opportunity to describe temporal trends in ART and HCV-treatment uptake among PWUD through 2015. METHODS: We analyzed data from PWUD participating in the ACS between 1985 and 2015. ART and HCV-treatment data were obtained from ACS questionnaires and medical records. Treatment uptake was defined by: treatment initiation (the proportion initiating any kind of ART/HCV treatment when treatment-naive) and coverage (the proportion ever treated for HIV/HCV) among all HIV-/HCV-RNA-positive PWUD. Each was calculated per calendar year. We estimated the cumulative probability of ART uptake in the pre-cART (<1996) and cART era (January 1, 1996) among HIV seroconverters, with all-cause mortality as a competing risk. RESULTS: Of 1305 PWUD, 263 (20.2%) were HIV-antibody positive and 810 (62.1%) were HCV-antibody positive, at study entry. ART coverage increased over time, from 5.7% in 1990 and 42.2% in 1996 to 91.7% in 2015. The proportion initiating ART ranged from 4.8% in 1990 to 33.3% in 2011. At 8 years after HIV seroconversion, cumulative probability of ART uptake was 42.5% in the pre-cART era and 61.5% in the cART era. HCV treatment initiation peaked in 2006 (9.7%). HCV-treatment coverage was 43.9% in 2015 but lower among HIV-coinfected (23.5%) than HCV-monoinfected PWUD (52.5%). In 2015, 3.0% initiated HCV treatment with DAAs. CONCLUSION: We observed an increase in ART and HCV-treatment coverage among PWUD over time. As expected, ART uptake was higher in the cART era than the pre-cART era. Although in 2015 HCV treatment coverage was relatively high, DAA uptake was still low.

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  • Journal: The International Journal on Drug Policy
  • Published: 01/09/2017
  • Volume: 47
  • Pagination: 95-101



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