Saturday, November 3, 2018

Ohio Medicaid lifts restrictions on costly hepatitis C drugs

Ohio Medicaid lifts restrictions on costly hepatitis C drugs
By Kaitlin Schroeder, Cox Newspapers

DAYTON, Ohio -- As the opioid crisis led to a spike in new hepatitis C cases, a breakthrough prescription hit the market five years ago that could cure the viral liver disease -- but at an eyepopping price tag of $1,000 per pill.

Now, as costs are coming down and demands for compassion mount, Ohio Medicaid will let all patients get the potentially life-saving medication once diagnosed instead of providing them to only the sickest patients.

The expensive medications caused Medicaid and private insurers that manage Medicaid plans to consider whether to limit the treatment based on the patient's stage of liver damage, and many did.

But Ohio Medicaid announced this week that in an effort to mitigate the harm caused by the opioid epidemic, the department is changing policy starting Jan. 1 to begin treatment at the time of chronic hep C diagnosis.

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On This Blog
The controversy over expensive new drugs for hepatitis C
Link to a collection of current research articles regarding the effectiveness and safety of generic hepatitis C medicines. Read news articles addressing the high cost, insurance restrictions; private insurers/Medicaid and availability of generic versions/India, Egypt and other lower-income countries or through online "buyers clubs"

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