One of the costliest drugs on the market threatens the Veterans
Affairs Department's health budget — to the point that VA, which added
the medication to its formulary in April, provides it to only the
sickest patients who need it.
treating all of the 174,000 hepatitis C patients in the VA health
system is cost-prohibitive. Even with the cost negotiated by VA with the
company's maker, Gilead Sciences Inc. of Foster City, California — $594
per dose — treatment would run nearly $12 billion.
VA has taken a conservative approach to providing the treatment,
reserving Sovaldi and its competitor, Olysio, made by Janssen
Therapeutics of Titusville, New Jersey (negotiated cost: $413 per pill),
for those with advanced liver disease or needing a transplant.
Labels: cost of drugs, DoD, VA