Free hepatitis C screenings offered in Kentucky

July 17, 2018 GMT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The University of Louisville Hospital will be partnering with medical volunteers to offer free hepatitis C screenings later this month.

A statement from the university says screenings will be offered in 18 locations in and around Louisville on World Hepatitis Day, Saturday, July 28. The screening involves a finger prick with results available in 20 minutes.

Officials say Kentucky has one the highest hepatitis C infection rates in the country. The blood-borne illness can damage the liver if left untreated.

In the past, treating hepatitis C was a difficult process that lasted nearly a year and had multiple side effects, but officials say it is now easily curable and relatively inexpensive to treat.