NHSE&I, the DHSC, and the PSNC have come to an agreement that the service, intended for people who inject drugs, should be provided until 31 March 2023

Africa Studio hepatitis c hep test antibody

NHS England and NHS Improvement, the DHSC, and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee have agreed that they will commission the community pharmacy hepatitis C antibody testing advanced service for another year, until 31 March 2023. The service was originally planned to conclude at the end of March 2022.

Contractors have been made aware that the decision is backdated to 1 April 2022, so they are able to claim as normal for tests carried out as part of this service from that date.

The service provides point-of-care testing for hepatitis C antibodies to people who inject drugs, but who haven’t yet moved to the point of accepting treatment for their substance use. Where people test positive for hepatitis C antibodies, they are referred for a confirmatory test and treatment, where appropriate.

In September 2021, it was reported that fewer than 700 community pharmacies had signed up for the service, largely because of it being launched in the middle of a global pandemic.

Further details of the service can be found in the service specification on the NHS England website.

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