Friday, October 9, 2015

October Newsletters: The Medicaid FFS formulary has added Daklinza and Technivie as non-preferred drugs for HCV.

October Newsletters

Hello everyone, get comfy and enjoy this months collection of Newsletters. The following October publications are most certainly filled with valuable information, from data on newer HCV therapies, in particular for those individuals who failed treatment, to personal stories from inspiring people living with or treating viral hepatitis.

In The News

From: NYC Hep C Task Force

HCV Med Update | Daklinza and Technivie Added to Medicaid FFS Formulary
October 9, 2015

The Medicaid FFS formulary has added Daklinza and Technivie as non-preferred drugs for HCV. Read more here: New York State Medicaid Fee-For-Service Pharmacy Programs

NOTE: This is Medicaid FFS for only. The managed care plans may not have added these new drugs yet to their formularies. To check and see if a managed care plan has added these new drugs to their formularies go to: The HCV drugs are listed under the “Therapeutic Classes” tab.

View all news, here.

October Newsletters


NYC Hep C Task Force
The New York City Hepatitis C Task Force is a city-wide network of service providers and advocates concerned with hepatitis C and related issues. The groups come together to learn, share information and resources, network, and identify hepatitis C related needs in the community. Committees form to work on projects in order to meet needs identified by the community

October 2015 Hep Free NYC Newsletter

In This Newsletter
New Tools
Upcoming Events
Take a Leadership Role
Training & Technical Assistance
Journal Articles
and more...
Begin here

View all newsletters, here.

Subscribe to this Newsletter

Join Us


HCV Advocate
The HCV Advocate newsletter is a valuable resource designed to provide the hepatitis C community with monthly updates on events, clinical research, and education.

Read The HCV Advocate Daily
Current edition

Fall Newsletter 
October Issue 

In This Issue

HCV Drugs 
by Alan Franciscus, Editor-in-Chief
Read about Achillion’s latest clinical trial results from their PROXY study, information about insurance denials, how far we have come in treating the most difficult to treat patients, but how far we still have to go to cure everyone with hepatitis C, drug-drug interactions and re-treatment issues.

by Lucinda K. Porter, RN
In this month’s column, Lucinda answers some important post-treatment questions from people living with hepatitis C.

What The Heck Are RAVs? 
by Alan Franciscus, Editor-in-Chief
If you have been treated before with a direct-acting antiviral medication, but not cured, this brief overview is an important topic to understand.

by Alan Franciscus, Editor-in-Chief
Three studies that look at treating people with advanced liver disease and re-treatment of people who had been previously treated with direct-acting antiviral medications but did not achieve a cure.
Begin here...

What's New? 
by Alan Franciscus, Editor-in-Chief
If you have visited our new website, you will have noticed that we have incorporated our hepatitis B website—HBV Advocate—within the HCV Advocate website. We also have updated our HBV fact sheets and the HBV blog

In Case You Missed It

September Mid-Month
♦ THE FIVE: Cirrhosis
♦ DISABILITY & BENEFITS: Emotional Issues When Leaving Work on a Disability
♦ HCV DRUG PIPELINE—Quarterly Update
♦ Hepatitis C Training Workshop Schedule
Begin here

Connect With HCV Advocate



HepCBC Hepatitis C Education and Prevention Society

The hepc.bull, has been “Canada’s hepatitis C journal” since the late 1990′s and has been published nonstop since 2001. The monthly newsletter contains the latest research results, government policy changes, activities and campaigns you can get involved in, articles by patients and caregivers, and a list of support groups plus other useful links.

October HepC Bull Newsletter
hepc.bull -- 10 2015


Australia's desperate HCV patients are becoming sicker or dying, with their families and physicians becoming ever more frustrated. There are significant concerns with such a group including whether it is actually a legal entity engaged in legal activities, if the products it helps distribute are safe and efficacious, if the patients are getting proper medical diagnoses and monitoring, and if international intellectual property law is being followed. Yet such a club helps highlight the human cost of the high prices being charged for these new medications..

Wrong End of the Needle
It was the end of a busy afternoon endoscopy list, nearing 5pm. My next patient was ‘fitted in’ at the end of the list. Despite being a prerequisite on the endoscopy checklist, the patient had no IV access. I inserted a flexible cannula (as per British Society of Gastroenterology guidelines) into the patient’s right hand. As I withdrew the hollow bore needle, the patient moved and the needle penetrated my left index finger. This was my first needlestick injury in 36 years of practice...

Chinese Health Fair 
The Asian community is dealing with a double epidemic of liver disease, with a significantly higher percentage of its population positive for both hepatitis B and C than the rest of Canada.

LINDA’S BLOG Continued from April
On the 9th of May, the day of my appointment with Marianne, the nurse, we got all the paperwork done for me to start treatment. She figured a week or two should be the timeline, because Gilead was very busy with all the people being treated at the moment.

Meet our new board of directors and more....
Begin here

View All Newsletters, Here

Stay Connected


GI & Hepatology News
GI & Hepatology News is the official newspaper of the AGA Institute and provides the gastroenterologist with timely and relevant news and commentary about clinical developments and about the impact of health-care policy. The newspaper is led by an internationally renowned board of editors.

GI & Hepatology Newsletter

October 2015 PDF ( 19.2MB) | October 2015 Interactive Version

Highlights: Liver Disease

Virologic response no protection from decompensation 
Patients with chronic hepatitis C who develop cirrhosis with severe portal hypertension are at greater risk of progressing to liver decompensation within the first 5 years of treatment, even if they show a sustained virologic response to therapy, a cohort study has found.

Cirrhosis in HCV often goes unreported 
Patients had significantly greater odds of cirrhosis (P less than .05) if they were older, male, Asian, Hispanic, had genotype 3 HCV infection, HIV coinfection, or a history of antiviral treatment, alcohol abuse, or diabetes, they added. “Our findings are the first in the United States to attempt an accurate estimate of the prevalence of cirrhosis in the CHC patient population at large,” the researchers concluded.

Hepatitis E linked to 1 in 10 liver failures 
A significant number of cases of acute liver failure may be caused by the hepatitis E virus, which a new study suggests may not necessarily be identified or excluded using serologic tests.

Integrated care overcomes HCV treatment barriers 
P atients with hepatitis C and psychiatric disorders or substance abuse problems benefit significantly from an integrated care model of treatment, with a randomized controlled trial showing such an approach is linked to greater rates of antiviral therapy and treatment response
Begin here

View all issues 

Read breaking news stories now: visit the GI & Hepatology News website.

Stay connected


In Case You Missed It

The Changing HCV Landscape
Update on Diagnosis and Treatment
With the enormous global burden of HCV, the need for effective, well-tolerated treatment regimens is great. A greater understanding of the virus’s life cycle has enabled the development of new agents that overcome some of the major disadvantages of the earlier standard of care that based therapy on IFN. The DAAs have all but replaced IFN as the foundation of treatment for HCV.

Excluding people who use drugs or alcohol from access to hepatitis C treatments - Is this fair, given the available data? - EDITORIAL -
We strongly recommend that all restrictions on access to new HCV treatments based on drug or alcohol use or opioid substitution treatment be removed.

News Rewind

New generation of Hep C drugs to hit markets in Nov
CAIRO: A new treatment regimen for hepatitis C is expected to hit the Egyptian market in November, in what the Ministry of Health has dubbed the “second generation of treatment,” Youm7 reported
Saturday. The new drugs are expected to be available at markets by November include Qurevo, Daklinza and Harvoni. The three new “complex” drugs create a variety in medications, from which patients and doctors can pick a treatment plan.

NuSirt launches phase 2a trial of patented regimen for NAFLD
October 9, 2015
NuSirt Biopharma announced it has begun enrolling patients for its phase 2a clinical trial investigating the efficacy of its patented regimen of leucine, metformin and sildenafil, for the treatment of patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Sask. woman pays $23K for drug to cure hepatitis C 7, 2015
"Leigh" had been living with hepatitis C for years, but was unaware she had been infected. CBC has agreed to protect the woman's identity as ...

Indian Drugmakers Engineer Hep C Cocktails Impossible in West
Ketaki Gokhale 
Caroline Chen
In 2001, before India started recognizing product patents, India’s Cipla Ltd. revolutionized the treatment of HIV by making the first pill that combined three different therapies, patented by three different western drugmakers. Now, generic drugmakers in India are working on a one-pill cocktail of the ingredients in Daklinza and Sovaldi that could compete with blockbuster Gilead drugs.

U.S. FDA Grants Priority Review For Daklinza (daclatasvir) sNDAs
The applications are for the treatment of patients with chronic hepatitis C (HCV) coinfected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1), patients with advanced cirrhosis (including decompensated cirrhosis), and for patients with post-liver transplant recurrence of HCV

Recently Mark S. Sulkowski, MD, of the John Hopkins University School of Medicine, in Baltimore, saw a teenage patient who had contracted hepatitis C after starting to shoot up as a 12-year-old.

iPhone app provides a window into patients' real-world experiences with hepatitis C
C Tracker lets hepatitis C patients participate in outcomes research from their iPhone Research Kit-based app will capture real-world daily impacts of hepatitis C to help drive improvements in treatment

Big Payoff Seen for Stronger Effort To Fight Hep B
Model estimates that comprehensive program could cut deaths by two-thirds by 2030
The number of deaths from infection with the hepatitis B virus (HBV) could be dramatically reduced globally through more comprehensive vaccination as well as screening and treatment programs, British researchers have found.

FDA approved revisions to the Olysio (simeprevir) label to include dosing recommendations for the treatment of HCV/HIV-1 coinfection and to expand the indications and usage to include genotype 4 infection.

Is Age A Consideration for Liver Transplant?
A common question Dr. Joe Galati is asked regarding transplant is what the upper age limit is to be considered for transplant? Dr. Galati expains further in this video.

Listen: Australia could be world leader in Hepatitis C treatment: experts

Blogs Around The Web

The Hepatitis B Foundation is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to finding a cure for hepatitis B and helping to improve the lives of those affected worldwide through research, education and patient advocacy. Visit

Liver Cancer Connect, a dedicated program of the Hepatitis B Foundation, provides patient-focused information on primary liver cancer. Visit

Join Us for a Twitter Chat- Liver Cancer is Preventable
October is Liver Cancer Awareness Month. Join the Hepatitis B Foundation and the National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable for a twitter chat, featuring hepatitis and liver cancer expert Dr. Robert Gish, at 2p.m. EDT Tuesday, October 20.
Click here

Get Tested for Liver Cancer, Your Life May Depend on It
Viral hepatitis, especially B and C, are viral infections that can cause liver cancer (also called hepatocellular carcinoma or HCC.) Researchers are still studying why some people are more prone to liver cancer, but we who live with chronic hepatitis B or C have a 25 to 40 percent lifetime risk of developing liver cancer. The infection, which hijacks our liver cells to manufacture more virus, causes inflammation, scarring and even cancer as the liver cells grow out of control.

HBV Advocate’s Blog
Emotional Issues When Leaving Work on Disability —By Jacques Chambers, CLU, September 2015
Note: This article written for the HCV Advocate, but it applies to anyone including those with HBV who is dealing with the emotional issues of going on disability.

Read all entries, here

VA claims blogger
Hugfest, for those of you unaware, is a gathering of souls who have (or had) Hepatitis C. Many souls died while waiting for the cure. With the advent of the new Gilead Sciences miracle drug known as Harvoni, or, as in my case, its earlier precursor Sovaldi, we are all healed. Emma is the dilemma. She is the last one left to be healed.
View all October entries, here

Rick Nash
29 years of hepatitis, 5 failed treatments...It's time to go from HepC to HepFree
Hope is not a four letter word
We've been seeing DAAs like Sovaldi come out lots of labs, but we're about to witness the rest of the big companies throw their hat into the ring. Gilead's use of the Warehouse of Hep C (HCV) patients has led to historic profits for Gilead. Johnson and Johnson's Olysio tapped into the market, and Bristol Myers Squibb's new Daklinza (daclatasvir) are filling the gaps Gilead's Sovaldi left.

Blogs At

Hep is an award-winning print and online brand for people living with and affected by viral hepatitis. Offering unparalleled editorial excellence since 2010, Hep and are the go-to source for educational and social support for people living with hepatitis.

Greg Jefferys
My Hep C Travel Diary, Hepatitis C Advocate
Hepatitis C Treatment: A Review of Generic Options
After a day of quietness and reflection I read my recent emails and comments on the blog and see that because of the effective end of supply of APIs from Mesochem a lot of people are a bit at sea about what the current options are for accessing affordable Hepatitis C treatment. In response to this today I will review the options for affordable Hep C Treatment.
Click here

Matt Starr
Hepatitis, Liver Disease Support Coach
Hepatitis and Feelings
Shame. Isolation. For many of you, if you suffer from hepatitis C or liver disease, these feelings show up. The root of the shame, at least for me, is based on past responsibilities and the pride of providing for my family with a decent teacher's salary and family benefits. What about you? Do you feel shame from carrying this virus? Where do you think it comes from?
Lucinda K. Porter, RNAuthor, Hepatitis C Advocate, Health Educator
Hepatitis C, Fear and Worry
It took me nearly 25 years and Harvoni to overcome hepatitis C. Worry was much harder to conquer. However, it was the burden I needed to most unload.
Click here.
Connect With Us On Twitter and Facebook

FixHepC, is a Non-Profit website launched by Australian GP Dr James Freeman. The site offers Australian HCV patients information about purchasing hepatitis C medications from overseas. 
Testing Provisions Patient Safety
Back in February when patient zero asked me to help them personally import Hepatitis C medication the conversation went like this..
Click here

Healthy You

Tai chi can help build strength, relieve pain
(Reuters Health) - For people with chronic illnesses ranging from cancer to arthritis, Tai chi exercises may improve walking, build strength and reduce pain, according to a new analysis of past research.
Cigarette smoking increases the risk of mortality from liver cancer
A study in October's issue of the Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology evaluates the association between smoking and liver cancer mortality.

Influenza vaccine can prevent pneumonia hospitalizations 
The influenza vaccine may be able to prevent approximately 57% of hospitalizations due to influenza pneumonia.
Liver Enzymes Tell Tale in Hepatitis C ComplicationsThere is a high incidence of NAFLD in patients with hepatitis C and that poses a further health risk for patients since it can progress to liver diseases such as nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), liver cirrhosis, and hepatocellular cancer.

Diabetes and hepatitis C: a two-way association
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) and hepatitis C are prevalent diseases worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that 170 million people are chronically infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) globally (1), and 347 million have diabetes mellitus (DM). Despite decreasing prevalence of hepatitis C infection in the United States, the disease burden continues to grow due to hepatitis C-related diseases (2). Studies have shown that more than one-third of patients with chronic HCV infection will develop at least one extrahepatic manifestation

HCV Weekend Reading - Diet, nutrition, physical activity, and liver cancer
In honor of Liver Cancer Awareness Month, we focus today on lifestyle choices and liver cancer, using research that has established an association between the two, as well as disease progression in HCV.

Air Pollution May Increase Risk for Liver Fibrosis and Cancer
Researchers say it's likely that fine pollution particles elicit an inflammatory stress response in the body that promotes collagen deposition around the body.

A monthly newsletter from the National Institutes of Health, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Illustration of circuits and arrows inside a man’s brain.October Newsletter 

Biology of Addiction
Drugs and Alcohol Can Hijack Your Brain
People with addiction crave and seek out drugs or alcohol no matter what the cost. What is it about addiction that makes people lose control? And why is it so hard to quit?
Read more about the biology of addiction.

Illustration of toothpaste, toothbrush, and dental floss.
Keep Your Mouth Healthy
Oral Care for Older Adults
Tooth decay and gum disease don’t have to be a part of getting older. Take steps to keep your mouth healthy throughout your lifetime.
Read more about oral care for older adults.

Download a PDF version of NIH News in Health

Off To The Apple Orchard

Any weekend plans? Tomorrow Nana and the short people will be checking out the local apple orchard to pick a few apples, visit a really big pumpkin patch, and take one scary walk through a cornfield.

I sure hope the latter goes better this year, last years infamous corn maze was an odd experience.

At first everything was going as well as can be expected, that was until the baby lost Nana - it was the most horrifying 4 minutes of my life. I was screaming, he was hiding, his brother was laughing, spiders were attacking, how incredibly exciting!

On the way home the kids and I voted against telling the parents, the vote was 2 to 1. The oldest feeling loyalty toward his parents voted to tell. First born children are like that, the youngest not so much. Twenty minutes later it was unanimous, we won't tell. The baby walked away once again unscathed, and the oldest walked away with five bucks in his pocket. I do what I can. 

I will update this entry with news before I head off to the apple orchard tomorrow, check back.

Enjoy the weekend everyone.


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