Strengthening the capacity of health and community services to respond effectively to hepatitis B will reduce the chronic hepatitis B burden on Australia.
Chronic hepatitis B infection is a complex disease and services providing care and support are diverse. It is essential that these sectors have access to accurate information about hepatitis B and the skills to impart this knowledge.
General practitioners, primary healthcare teams, hospital-based nurses and interpreter services play a significant role in identifying, monitoring, supporting and managing people with chronic hepatitis B infection and will play an expanding role in treatment. Some of these healthcare workers have not received specific training on hepatitis B (particularly the management of the sequelae of chronic hepatitis B) in their pre-service training so catch-up strategies, continuing professional education and on-the-job training is required to increase clinical skills and cultural competency.
Developing cultural competency requires sustained collaboration with communities most affected by chronic hepatitis B. There will be organisations in which cultural competence at an individual or professional level is underpinned by systemic and organisational commitment and capacity so that services are effectively provided to people with chronic hepatitis B.
Priority actions in workforce and organisational development
- Identify research on the capacity and need for workforce development and models which may be transferable.
- Develop nationally consistent and accurate information about chronic hepatitis B for the community and health sectors, including national benchmarks or minimum standards.
- Develop education on chronic viral hepatitis B for the medical practitioners, nurses, pharmacists, other healthcare workers, interpreters and people working with communities most affected.
Ministerial Advisory Committee on Blood Borne Viruses and Sexually Transmissible InfectionsRobert Batey
Michael Kidd (Chair)
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Viral Hepatitis Expert Writing Reference GroupBob Batey (Chair)
Helen McNeill (Deputy Chair)
Writing teamLevinia Crooks