Medicaid, Private Insurers Begin To Lift Curbs On Pricey Hepatitis C Drugs

(By Judith Graham for Kaiser Health News)

After legal battles and lobbying efforts, tens of thousands of people with hepatitis C are gaining earlier access to expensive drugs that can cure this condition.

States that limited access to the medications out of concern over sky-high prices have begun to lift those restrictions — many, under the threat of legal action. And commercial insurers such as Anthem Inc. and United HealthCare are doing the same.

Massachusetts is the latest state to decide that anyone with hepatitis C covered by its Medicaid program will qualify for the newest generation of anti-viral drugs. Previously, managed care plans serving Medicaid members often limited the drugs, with a list price of up to $1,000 a pill or more, to people with advanced liver disease only. Read article here……

Kaiser Health News is a nonprofit national health policy news service that is part of the nonpartisan Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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