Hepatitis C is a virus that affects the liver. Transmission occurs through blood to blood contact – when blood containing the virus enters the bloodstream of another person.
Very rarely, hepatitis C may also be transmitted during sex without a condom where blood is present. Find out more about how you can help prevent hepatitis C.
Hepatitis C is not transmitted by casual contact like holding hands; kissing on the cheek; coughing or sneezing; sharing food; or sharing eating utensils.
Without treatment, about three quarters of people infected with hepatitis C develop chronic (long-lasting) infection and some eventually develop liver failure or cancer of the liver.
About a quarter of people infected with hepatitis C virus recover or 'clear' the infection without specific treatment.
There is treatment that can cure hepatitis C in 70-80% of cases, and treatment continues to improve. For further information visit Hepatitis NSW.