Since their introduction, the expensive Hepatitis C treatment pills from Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:GILD) together with other drugs such as Harvoni and Solvadi have been experiencing positive and attractive sales.
The reason these drugs are selling so much despite their high price tags is because they are highly effective. While this is good news for the company, it is the opposite for health insurers. Most insurers have been shying away from covering the expensive drugs such as the Hepatitis C treatment that require a hefty $1000 for a single day dose. A recent study revealed that despite the expensive nature of these drugs, they are price effective considering their performance.
Insurance companies are thus facing more pressure to cover these treatments. The report is a review performed by a group of medical experts and doctors that play a key role in helping insurance firms set their insurance policies. Insurance companies have been covering treatments for severely ill patients through the drugs from AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV) and Gilead Sciences. Unfortunately, they refuse to cover patients who have not yet exhibited severe symptoms of the disease. The argument is that even if there are discounts offered, they would still incur heavy costs because the treatments run for duration of eight to ten weeks keeping in mind the expensive daily dose.
The American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and the Infectious Diseases Society of America is working hand in hand with the panel to represent the views of more than 10,000 medical practitioners. Together, they are placing more emphasis on the need for insurers to make the drug more accessible to the public. Benjamin Linas, from the Boston Medical Center, confirmed that the discussions claim that the drug is cost effective.
Linas also participated in a publication that backs up the cost-effective nature of the drug. It stated that the drug was only cost effective for patients treated in their early stages after receiving discounts that range from 40% to 60%.