The overall objective of the project is to assess, describe and communicate to public health professionals the tools and conditions necessary for implementing successful screening programmes for hepatitis B and C in migrants in the European Union.
Different methods and means will be used to achieve the general objective. Methods include literature review and surveys with structured questionnaires to obtain additional information from experts. Communication materials will be collected and tools will be developed to facilitate information and communication exchange with health care professionals. The main product of the project is a tool kit for public health professionals and policy makers containing recommendations, information and materials on implementing a screening programme.
Central to the project are four pilot studies using different screening strategies:
1) information and outreaching, combined with testing through local general practitioners;
2) combined information and testing on location;
3) opportunistic and systematic case finding in general practice; and
4) case finding through existing screening programs.
Through the achievement of the objectives, the project will lay the foundation for the expansion of screening and prevention programmes for hepatitis B and C among migrants in countries of the European Union. It is hoped to stimulate and encourage investment, intervention and activities relating to hepatitis B and C among migrants in the EU.
The specific objectives of the project are addressed in the different core work packages.
Screening, treatment, health care and patient management
Collect and analyse information on screening practices, counselling, health care and patient management of hepatitis B and C in migrants in the EU using literature, a survey and expert consultation, as basis for further activities of the project.
Communication to target population and health professionals
Develop an information and communication platform for health care professionals through collating information on effective communication strategies and materials in order to improve scientific skills and competences.
Design and field-test pilot screening programmes in Spain, England, Scotland and Hungary using systematic, opportunistic and outreach approaches for case detection of chronic hepatitis B and C and targeting different migrant groups.
Integration of results and development of a toolkit
Integrate the findings and outcomes of WP 4-6 and from this develop a tool kit for public health professionals and a short policy document for public health authorities and other health policy oriented parties.