Are hep C exclusivity deals taking power from doctors?

Exclusivity deals for hepatitis C drugs by pharmacy benefit managers and a major health plan have raised concerns that the decision of which drug is best for a patient is being taken away from clinicians.

While thankful that the companies are ensuring access to treatment, some patient advocates find the trend unsettling.

Alan Franciscus, executive director of the Hepatitis C Support Project, called the agreements “a scary precedent.” “The insurance companies and dispensing companies like CVS and Express Scripts are deciding what drugs hepatitis C patients are being prescribed instead of physicians making medical decisions based on solid science,” Franciscus said.

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