2 ECHO clinics running across Liver Disease
Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) has replicated the ECHO model in India as ILBS-ECHO Program with a goal to augment & further update the knowledge & skills of the clinicians in primary health care as well as those in teaching medical colleges across the country for liver related disorders.
ILBS-ECHO is a healthcare program to develop capacity in physicians to effectively identify, treat and manage cases of acute & chronic liver related diseases, resulting in, and improved access of patients to a level of care equivalent to that provided in tertiary care health facility. Project ILBS-ECHO connects isolated physicians with colleagues, including specialists at academic medical centres with a Hepatitis teleECHO clinic.
The ILBS-ECHO Program aims to mentor doctors of 37 Medical Colleges within India – those which do not have a department of Gastroenterology/ Hepatology – in Liver and Biliary diseases.
Liver illnesses due to variety of factors (viral & bacterial infections, metabolic, congenital storage disorders, obstructive pathologies, genetic disorders etc.) are complex entities requiring expert management that requires early diagnosis & appropriate treatment that meets the highest clinical standards. Hepatitis B and C are global diseases and these two illnesses alone constitute about 75% of all cases of liver diseases in the world. It is being realized in the scientific world that HBV, HCV & HDV are emerging as the next silent epidemic the world over and thus India cannot escape this epidemic due to socio-demographic reasons. Prevalence of Hepatitis C varies from 0.3 – 2% in various parts of India (with an average at 1% in general population). India also has intermediate prevalence of Hepatitis B of approximately 4% (range is 2% to 7%).
Considering all above factors, it becomes important that educating the service providers on appropriate management of liver diseases is taken up on priority and to overcome this challenge ILBS ECHO project was established.