Hepatitis C affects nearly 58 million people worldwide, the majority of whom live in the Eastern Mediterranean Region. There is limited data about hepatitis C disease or its knowledge in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This study assessed knowledge about hepatitis C and barriers to screening for it in the UAE. This exploratory, descriptive, cross-sectional study evaluated 1083 participants using a convenience sampling method. Participants aged 18 and above, literate in English or Arabic, were included in the study. The validated questionnaire was administered online and distributed across social media platforms from November 2020 to February 2021 and responses were analysed using Python. Mean knowledge score was 11.83 (SD = 7.28). Knowledge was average with 57.52% (n = 489 of 850) of respondents achieving a moderate knowledge score, but poor awareness about treatment options were noted. Only 54.12% (n = 460 of 850) were aware that treatment was possible and 24.10% (n = 205 of 850) knew that there was no vaccine for hepatitis C. Field of work (P < 0.001), marital status (P < 0.001) and perceived knowledge (P < 0.001) were statistically significant predictors of knowledge score. Lack of insurance coverage for testing and limited knowledge about hepatitis C were identified as the most common barriers to getting tested. The UAE community has moderate knowledge about hepatitis C but a poor understanding of available preventive and treatment options. Targeted outreach programmes, particularly for high-risk groups, are needed to improve community awareness of hepatitis C.

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