New hepatitis drugs raise political pressure in Spain

MADRID - The arrival in Europe of better but pricier hepatitis C drugs has raised pressure on Spanish leaders over health spending cuts which sufferers say deprive them of life-saving treatments.

Hundreds of people have marched in Madrid and other Spanish towns demanding the government authorise doctors to prescribe the latest treatments for the deadly liver disease for whoever needs them.

Discussions over the new treatments have also erupted in the United States and France as the hopes raised by more effective treatments clash with public health budget restrictions.

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