The Trumbull Health Department is offering a new service to residents. Free hepatitis c screening is now available at the Health Department, 335 White Plains Road. The test is confidential.
Testing requires a drop of blood from a finger stick. The results are available in 20 minutes. Residents are encouraged to call the Health Department at 203-452-1030 to schedule an appointment with the public health nurse. The entire screening takes about 45 minutes.
"Residents can become seriously ill if infected with hepatitis c," said said Health Director Rhonda Capuano. "In most cases, there are no symptoms. That is why the Health Department has expanded its list of services and now offers hepatitis c screening."
hepatitis c is a viral disease that infects the liver that is spread through contact with blood from an infected person. Almost 3.5 million people in the U.S. have the disease and most are unaware they are infected. Usually, there are no symptoms of the disease until many years later. Liver disease is very serious and can be life threatening. There is no vaccine to prevent the disease but there are treatments that can cure it. The only way to know if you are infected is to be tested.
People most at risk are those born between 1945 and 1965; people who have had tattoos, body art or piercings; recipients of blood transfusions, blood products or organ transplants; people who used needles or straws used for recreational drugs; Vietnam veterans, health care workers, dialysis patients, babies of hepatitis c infected mothers, and people co-infected with HIV.
For learn more about hepatitis c or to schedule an appointment, call the Trumbull Health Department at 203-452-1030.