Staff from Armley-based drug and alcohol service Forward Leeds are helping those with hepatitis C to help themselves.
A new blood-borne virus (BBV) peer support group will meet monthly at the Forward Leeds Kirkgate hub. Initially, it will be for clients and former clients of Forward Leeds.
Karen Towning, BBV Nurse at Forward Leeds, said:
“We recognised there is a real need for this kind of support group in Leeds. There can be a lot of worry and uncertainty for people about getting hepatitis C treatment. There can also be a lot of stigma with the disease.”
The group would be peer-led so that the members of the group would support and help each other, offering those with hepatitis C the chance to talk with people in similar situations. Those attending would be trying to support each other.
Hepatitis C affects the liver and prevents it from working properly. Approximately 216,000 people in the UK have chronic hepatitis C and around 50% of people who have ever injected drugs have the disease.
Pictured above are Forward Leeds workers Mel Senior, Karen Towning, and Louise Maidens.