Are you BBVAware?

Image of a syringe with the words BBV Aware

World Hepatitis Day (July 28) highlights the value of getting tested for blood-borne viruses. Today’s treatments are simple and life-changing.

Hepatitis C is a blood-borne virus that damages a person’s liver.

Anglicare Needle and Syringe Program worker Jamila describes it as “a silent infection.”

“It’s common for people not to know that they have Hepatitis C, particularly as some people may only experience flu-like symptoms,” she said. “The liver performs more than 500 functions in the body so it’s important for it to be in good shape. Without treatment, the person risks chronic liver damage. Finding out your status is an important first step to becoming hepatitis-free.”

Symptoms of Hepatitis C can include fever, overwhelming tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, pale faeces, joint pain and jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes.)

The rate of Hepatitis C infection in Tasmania is slightly higher than the national average. In 2021, 270 people were living with the virus. However, the good news is that both testing and treatment rates have increased.

Anglicare Tasmania is a participant in the Tasmanian Government’s Eliminate Hep C Outreach project through our Blood-borne Virus Awareness Program, BBVAware.

Anglicare’s Needle and Syringe Program (NSP) outlets have regularly hosted testing sessions for people who think they may already have a BBV or may be at risk of contracting one. See below for information on testing dates and locations in the South during August.

“Around 500 people have been tested over the three years the program has been running across Tasmania. And more than 90 people have commenced treatment – which is a great result,” said Jamila.

“The testing done at Anglicare NSPs has been carried out by a registered nurse, Megan, from Sexual Health Tasmania. She understands the barriers to getting tested and makes the testing and treatment process as uncomplicated as possible.”

If a person’s test comes back positive, they will be supported under the program. They will be provided with a prescription for an 8-12 week course of tablets that can be collected from a pharmacy without the need to involve any other medical practitioners. A final blood test is taken to confirm that the virus has been cleared.


Visit an NSP and become BBVAware

Anglicare runs Needle and Syringe Program (NSP) outlets in Hobart (159 Collins Street), Glenorchy (436 Main Road) and Burnie (51 Wilmot Street).  Check out the friendly Hobart team in the photo below.

People who inject drugs can call in without an appointment to collect safe injecting equipment between 12.30 pm and 5.00 pm Monday to Friday.

Our friendly and professional team members can also provide information on blood-borne viruses and support individuals safety more widely.

We offer in-person and online training sessions available that will boost understanding and awareness about BBVs. Book a session on this webpage.


Testing clinics coming up in Glenorchy and Bridgewater

Anglicare is hosting testing clinics in its Glenorchy NSP between 10am – 3.30pm on Tuesday 22 and Tuesday 29 August. You don’t need an appointment – just bring along your Medicare card and mobile phone so that your test results can be sent to you confidentially. The test will be performed by a registered nurse.

We are also supporting testing clinics at the Bridgewater Community House, 6 Bowden Drive, Bridgewater between 9.30am – 2.30 pm on Thursday 24 August and Thursday 31 August. The same arrangements apply.


More information

This blog provides information about the range of BBVs that are common in Australia.

The Tasmanian Council on AIDS, Hepatitis, and Related Diseases (TasCAHRD) has published a brochure about Hepatitis C on its website.

National Hepatitis Infoline1800 437 222. It’s free and confidential.

Hepatitis Australia – the peak national community organisation whose vision is ‘to see an end to viral hepatitis in Australia’.

Enquire onlineContact us

Please fill in this form and a representative of Anglicare will reply to your message within two working days. Be sure to provide your complete contact details so we can respond to you.

Click the button below to visit our contact page

Contact us

Or, phone us on

1800 243 232