ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Organizers of New York's first-ever Hepatitis C summit are calling on Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature to wipe out Hepatitis C in the state.

Public health officials, elected leaders, medical experts and patient advocates released a statement at the Tuesday summit in Albany calling for an official task force to fight the chronic disease that afflicts more than 200,000 people in the state.

The statement says New York's medical and research resources provide a solid foundation to enhance prevention, expand screening and provide access to affordable treatment.

Hepatitis C is spread through contact with contaminated blood. The ongoing heroin and opioid epidemic has emerged as a new contributor to the spread of the disease.