Hepatitis C (HCV) is a serious infection caused by a blood-borne virus. It is a contagious disease spreading rapidly via a variety of transmission mechanisms including contaminated tattoo equipment. Effectively regulating commercial tattoo parlours can greatly reduce this risk. This paper models the cost-effectiveness and optimal timing of such interventions, and parameterizes the model with data for Vienna, Austria. This dynamic model of the contagious spread of HCV via tattooing and other mechanisms accounts for secondary infections and shows that regulation can be highly cost-effective.
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