CDC pamphlets are available for education

As part of a national campaign to increase awareness of and testing for hepatitis C virus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has developed educational materials that can be used to advise HCV-infected patients or health care workers about measures to prevent subsequent transmission. An excerpt of these materials is summarized below:

The CDC reminds that HCV is not spread by breast feeding, sneezing, casual contact, sharing eating utensils or drinking glasses, hugging, food or water, or coughing. However, those infected with HCV should not donate blood, body organs, other tissue, or sperm. They should not share toothbrushes, razors, or other personal care articles that might have blood on them. They should cover any cuts or sores on the skin.

HCV-infected people should not be excluded from work, school, play, childcare, or other settings on the basis of their HCV infection status. Those infected do not need to change their sexual practices if they have one steady partner. How ever, the CDC advises that if you have one steady sex partner, there is a very low chance of giving hepatitis C to that partner through sexual activity. Those who want to lower the small chance of spreading HCV to their partner, may decide to use latex condoms. The CDC advises that those infected ask their doctors about having their sex partner tested.

HCV-infected women do not need to avoid pregnancy or breast-feeding. About five out of every 100 infants born to HCV-infected women become infected. This occurs at the time of birth, and there is no treatment that can prevent this from happening. Most infants infected with HCV at the time of birth seem to do very well in the first few years of life. More studies are needed to find out if these infants will have problems from the infection as they grow older. Those who have given birth to any children since they became infected with HCV should ask their doctor about having them tested.

HCV-infected people who inject street drugs should stop and get into a drug treatment program. Those who cannot stop, should not reuse or share syringes, water, or drug works.