The Hepatitis Education Project conducts both on-site and off-site hepatitis C antibody screening. Aside from the HEP office, testing is done at chemical dependency centers, needle exchanges, community health fairs and drop in centers for homeless youth.
The test, which consists solely of a finger prick, checks for exposure to hepatitis C. It does not confirm an active infection. While 75% of people exposed to the hepatitis C virus develop a chronic infection, only a PCR or viral load test can confirm active infection. As such, individuals who test antibody positive are strongly encouraged to seek further screening to determine whether or not they resolved the virus or developed a chronic hepatitis C infection.
Counseling and testing appointments typically last 20-30 minutes, and results take approximately three weeks to return. Upon receipt of results, a representative from the Hepatitis Education Project will send a letter and a copy of the results to the testing client. Individuals who test positive will also receive a phone call to discuss subsequent confirmatory testing and connecting to medical care.
Testing is completely confidential and free. If you would like to schedule a testing appointment or would like HEP to conduct a testing event at your agency or health fair, please call 206-732-0311.