In early 2017, Pharos met with leading Malaysian hepatologists and Ministry of Health officials to discuss how we could best support HCV scale-up ambitions in Malaysia. It was agreed that Pharos’ technical support would be most needed in modeling cost-effective screening strategies that would enable national treatment scale-up. Through deep collaboration with the University of Malaya and the Netherlands Institute for Health and the Environment, Pharos estimated the screening coverage and associated costs of potential screening strategies that combined targeting of key populations and decentralized general population screening. As treatment costs continue to decline due to breakthroughs in technologies and affordability, more attention and priority will be placed on the design and efficiency of screening programs as countries look to identify patients to initiate on treatment.

Final publication summarizing the screening strategy approach and analysis:

Out of this is work came a realization of how important reliable population size estimates for sub-populations are to planning HCV screening and testing scale-up. To help inform future scale-up efforts, we collaborated with Dr. McDonald of the National Institute of Public Health and the Environment in the Netherlands and colleagues at the University of Malaya to estimate the population size of people who inject drugs in Malaysia using an improved benchmark-multiplier method approach.

Read the final results here:

Team members: Lindsey Hiebert, Robert Hecht, Scott McDonald (University of Malaya and the Netherlands Institute of Public Health and the Environment), Rosmawati Mohamed (University of Malaya), Fatiha Shabaruddin (University of Malaya), Amirah Azzeri (University of Malaya), Maznah Dahlui (University of Malaya)



Below are examples of abstracts presented on the screening work