About the Webinar
The Compassionate Conversations series is aimed at highlighting effective techniques and answering questions on having sensitive conversations around difficult topics. For our second virtual conversation in this series, we will be focusing on patient-centered discussions regarding hepatitis C, and how health care professionals in obstetrics and gynecology can support their patients.
Hepatitis C is the most reported bloodborne infection in the United States.1 Over 65% of acute hepatitis C virus (HCV) cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2018 were among persons aged 20–39 years.2 Because of the increasing number of HCV infections among women of childbearing age,3 it is increasingly important for health care professionals to work with their patients to support screenings and care to prevent perinatal transmission during pregnancy. In this webinar, we hope to provide obstetric and gynecologic health care professionals and their patients with the tools to be confident in discussing hepatitis C in a sensitive and respectful manner.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Viral Hepatitis Surveillance — United States, 2018. Published July 2020. https://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/statistics/SurveillanceRpts.htm
- Schillie SF, Canary L, Koneru A, Nelson NP, Tanico W, Kaufman HW, Hariri S, Vellozzi CJ. Hepatitis C Virus in Women of Childbearing Age, Pregnant Women, and Children. Am J Prev Med. 2018 Nov;55(5):633-641. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2018.05.029. PMID: 30342628
Eilean Attwood, MD
Dr. Eilean Attwood graduated from medical school in 2009 from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston. She completed her residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, in 2013. Following residency, she moved to New England and joined a private practice group for two years prior to joining the academic faculty at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, Massachusetts. During her tenure at Baystate, she served for three years as the medical director for the Wesson Women’s Clinic, the largest multidisciplinary ob-gyn single office in the region. During that time, she also completed a Master of Public Health from the University of Massachusetts. Most recently, in January 2020 she joined the faculty practice at Women & Infants Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island, and has been the medical director of the Women’s Emergency Department for the past three years. Throughout her career, Dr. Attwood has been an active ACOG member, serving in multiple roles, and she currently functions as the vice chair of the Committee on Health Economics and Coding (CHEC). Outside of the world of obstetrics and gynecology, Eilean enjoys being outside, biking, and "glamping" as much as possible with her husband, five-year-old son, and two-year-old daughter.
Jennifer Sharp is a co-director at SHOTS, Oklahoma’s first syringe service program. She is also a Leading with Lived Experience consultant for NASTAD’s HepNET project, a cooperative agreement aiming to identify and address the unmet needs of people who inject drugs by improving access to viral hepatitis education, prevention, testing, linkages to care, and treatment, guided and informed by the voices, perspectives, insights, and lived experiences of people who inject drugs.
Jennifer comes to her work through her own lived experience with injection drug use, perinatal addiction, and hepatitis C. She was diagnosed at her methadone clinic in 2004, shortly following the birth of her son and spent the next 15 years uninsured, untreated, and unsure how to care for herself and her family. She relates to the unanswered questions, fears, and hesitations, of those who know they are at risk or have acquired an infection. Jennifer works today to provide compassion, education, and sterile supplies to people who inject drugs while relying on strategic community partnerships to provide them with testing, linkages to care, and treatment.
Dr. Tatyana Kushner is an associate professor in the Division of Liver Diseases at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, with a joint appointment in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences. She started the Women's Liver Clinic at Mount Sinai, which provides care to women with liver disease during pregnancy and postpartum. Her clinical and research interests have included improving our understanding of the epidemiology and outcomes of liver diseases in pregnancy, with a particular focus on hepatitis C in pregnant individuals. She is a member of the AASLD Women's Initiatives Committee and is on the AASLD/ IDSA HCV Guidance Committee. In addition, she is an advisor to the CDC Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination Treatment in Pregnancy –Hepatitis C registry.
Morgan is a mom raising three children in New York City. She was diagnosed with hepatitis C during her second pregnancy and now advocates for all pregnant women to be screened for hepatitis. She went through her treatment during her third trimester with Dr. Kushner. She believes that if we can remove the stigma around hepatitis C, then more people will be willing to be tested and treated, and more lives saved in the long run.
This webinar was supported by funding through Cooperative Agreement CDC-RFA-CK20-2003, National Partnerships to Prevent and Control Emerging and Re-Emerging Infectious Disease Threats, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The views expressed by the speakers do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services nor represent an endorsement of the U.S. Government.