A new Lancet Commission on Liver Disease report recommends specific monitoring of a range of different liver disease areas and methods for improvements.
Additionally the report, launched today (Friday 16 December), asks for a national review of liver transplantation and highlights the need for improved awareness of liver disease including the prevalence, symptoms and causes, in the general population and within the NHS.
The report - New metrics for the Lancet Standing Commission on Liver Disease in the UK – is the third annual report from the Lancet Commission on Liver Disease in the UK, and makes eight recommendations.
The eight recommendations are:
1: Improving expertise and facilities in primary care to strengthen detection of early disease and its treatment, and screening of high-risk patients in the community
2: Establishment of acute liver services in district general hospitals linked with 30 regional specialist centres for complex investigations and treatment, and increased provision of medical and nursing training in hepatology
3: A national review of liver transplantation to ensure better access for patients to increase capacity
4: Specialist paediatric services and continuity of care in transition arrangements for children with liver disease reaching adult life
5: Measures to reduce overall alcohol consumption in the country
6: Promotion of healthy lifestyles to reduce obesity and the burden of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
7: Eradication of chronic hepatitis C virus infection from the country by 2030 and a major reduction in the burden of disease for hepatitis B
8: Increasing awareness of liver disease in the general population and within the NHS; work of liver patient support groups.
Commenting on it, Andrew Langford, CEO of the British Liver Trust and a co-author of the report said:
“Hospital admissions and mortality rates from liver disease are increasing again, and with most liver disease being preventable, this simply cannot be justified.
“This report is aimed at everyone involved in healthcare, and importantly, also at those people employed at senior levels in those industries implicated in the increase of liver disease, such as the food and drink industries.
“Stark differences, between the burdens of liver disease in socially deprived areas, compared to more affluent ones, highlight the need for wider social and public health measures in addition to reducing alcohol consumption and obesity.
“Anyone concerned about their own liver health or that of a close friend or relative should visit our online screener at www.britishlivertrust.org.uk”