Yesterday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the country’s first state-level hepatitis C virus (HCV) elimination strategy. The plan seeks to increase treatment access and expand outreach programs to those most at risk of infection across the state, Healio reports.

The new announcement follows on the heels of the success of New York’s HIV/AIDS Services Administration, which has led the nation in efforts to end that epidemic. Cuomo said by expanding access to affordable housing and curbing the spread of hepatitis C, health officials could further build on that success.

In addition to increasing funding for HCV prevention, testing and treatment, the plan also expands its rental assistance program for New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS. Education efforts, patient navigation and increasing prevention programs in primary care settings have also been proposed. 

In a statement, American Liver Foundation president and CEO Tom Nealon said, “Funding for prevention, testing and treatment programs is essential given that HCV-related deaths have exceeded HIV-related deaths in the state outside of New York City since 2007.”