Medical groups question price of new hep C drug

March 11, 2014

An innovative hepatitis C drug that was only recently hailed as a breakthrough treatment is facing skepticism from some health care experts, as they consider whether it is worth the $1,000-a-pill price set by manufacturer Gilead Sciences.

A panel of California medical experts voted Monday that Gilead's Sovaldi represents a "low value" treatment when compared with older drugs for the blood borne virus. The vote was part of a broader review of new hepatitis C drugs by the California Technology Assessment Forum. The insurer-affiliated group assesses the and effectiveness of new medical treatments.

The group estimates that replacing currently used hepatitis C drugs with Gilead's Sovaldi would raise California drug costs between $18 billion and $29 billion per year. The drug costs $84,000 for one 12-week course of treatment.

Explore further: Gilead buys US pharma rival Pharmasset

Related Stories

Gilead buys US pharma rival Pharmasset

November 21, 2011

US biotech firm Gilead Sciences announced plans Monday to acquire rival Pharmasset, a group specializing in treatments for AIDS and hepatitis, for $11 billion.

FDA reviews two promising new drugs for hepatitis C

October 22, 2013

Doctors may soon have two new drug options to treat patients with hepatitis C, just as the liver-destroying virus becomes a major public health issue for millions of Americans reaching retirement age.

US panel backs Gilead Sciences' hepatitis C drug (Update)

October 23, 2013

U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisers on Friday unanimously voted in favor of a highly anticipated hepatitis C drug from Gilead Sciences that holds promise for millions infected with the liver-destroying virus.

US group seeks to block Gilead drug patent in India

November 24, 2013

A US-based patient rights group said Saturday it has sought to block a bid by California-based Gilead Sciences to obtain an Indian patent for a potentially blockbuster drug to treat hepatitis C.

US approves breakthrough hepatitis C drug (Update)

December 6, 2013

U.S. health officials have approved a highly anticipated hepatitis C drug from Gilead Sciences Inc. that is expected to offer a faster, more palatable cure to millions of people infected with the liver-destroying virus.

Doctor details two new hepatitis C drugs

December 20, 2013

In the last three weeks, the Food and Drug Administration has approved two new drugs that are expected to dramatically improve treatment of chronic hepatitis C, a liver-damaging viral infection that afflicts more than 3.2 ...

Recommended for you

Can exercise be replaced with a pill?

October 2, 2015

Everyone knows that exercise improves health, and ongoing research continues to uncover increasingly detailed information on its benefits for metabolism, circulation, and improved functioning of organs such as the heart, ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.