Changing Narrative on Affordability of HCV Treatments

A recent commentary (J Chhatwal et al. Clin Gastroenterol 2015; 13: 1711-13) makes the point that HCV treatment is looking a lot better lately with regard to cost.

Key points:

  • “Sofosbuvir-based treatment in 2015, on average, costs 54% of the wholesale acquisition cost”
  • When considering the recent discounts, “the cost of treatment decreased to $56,000…and the cost per SVR decreased to $58,000.”  The cost of an SVR with the first generation protease inhibitors, boceprevir and teleprevir, has been estimated to have been $213,000.
  • “The discounted cost of treating 1 person with HIV in the United States is $315,000 in 2014 US dollars.” Thus, curing HCV which is more deadly, at 18% of the cost, looks more favorable.
  • More discounts and more competition are expected.

Bottomline: Based on these cost considerations, the authors state that HCV treatment should be used broadly and not solely in those with advanced fibrosis.

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