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The 193rd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 4M: Hepatitis B and hepatitis C; needs assessment; prevention, education, outreach and surveillance programs; annual report

Section 4M. Subject to appropriation, the department shall:

(1) conduct a needs assessment to determine the incidence and prevalence of hepatitis B virus and hepatitis C virus in the commonwealth;

(2) develop and implement a program to prevent further transmission of viral hepatitis and to prevent onset of chronic liver disease caused by viral hepatitis;

(3) develop and implement a statewide public education and community outreach program to raise awareness and promote prevention of viral hepatitis;

(4) develop or approve evidence-based educational materials on the risks, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of viral hepatitis; provided that, the materials shall be made available in written and electronic form and shall be targeted to physicians and other health care providers and high-risk populations subject to an increased risk of contracting viral hepatitis as determined by the department;

(5) support the establishment and maintenance of a chronic and acute hepatitis B and hepatitis C surveillance program in order to identify (i) trends in the incidence of acute and chronic hepatitis B and acute and chronic hepatitis C, (ii) trends in the prevalence of acute and chronic hepatitis B and acute and chronic hepatitis C infection among groups that may be disproportionately affected and (iii) trends in liver cancer and end-stage liver disease incidence and deaths caused by chronic hepatitis B and chronic hepatitis C in high-risk populations; and

(6) annually report on the department's viral hepatitis education, awareness and prevention education and community outreach efforts to the joint committee on public health on or before January 1.