You have done a great job as a Virahep-C study volunteer. Keep up the good work as you begin the final stage of your treatment -- Stage 5, or the DESTINATION phase.
The focus of this final phase is to successfully reach your goal of finishing your treatment for hepatitis C. You can reach this destination by continuing to take your medications as directed for the last 3 months. Though you may be tempted to skip a dose now and then, remember how far you've come, and how close you are to the finish line.
There are a few other things to remember as you continue with your treatment. First, that alcohol and hepatitis C don't mix. To keep your liver healthy, it's important to avoid alcohol, even after you finish your medication. Second, people on combination therapy should use 2 forms of birth control during the study, and for 6 months afterwards. Don't forget that even AFTER you finish the medications, if you or your partner gets pregnant within 6 months, there is an increased risk of birth defects. Finally, keep both of your medications out of the reach of children.
Take a few minutes today to talk with your healthcare providers about how your treatment is going, and about what to expect once you finish the medications. And as always, be sure to reward yourself tonight for the effort you've given so far. You deserve it.
Though you will continue to return to the clinic for follow-up appointments, this is the last presentation you will see. We hope that the things you have learned along the way have helped you during your treatment program. Good luck as you begin the last 3 months of your medications. You're almost there.