LOS ANGELES, May 15, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Shernoff Bidart Echeverria Bentley LLP filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court today accusing Blue Cross of withholding a cure for Hepatitis C based only upon profits, in violation of California law.
The plaintiff, Shima Andre, suffers
from Hepatitis C, a contagious liver disease that can lead to
complications including severe liver damage, infections, cirrhosis,
liver cancer, and even death. But a new treatment is radically changing
the lives of those living with Hepatitis C. The treatment—Harvoni— was
just approved by the FDA in 2014 and was even designated as a
“breakthrough therapy” for its revolutionary ability to treat and cure
Hepatitis C. In clinical trials, Harvoni cured Hepatitis C in 95-99% of patients within only twelve weeks.
But according to the lawsuit, Blue Cross
has arbitrarily chosen to give the treatment only to those patients
suffering from the worst stages of liver damage. Despite the opinions of
other patients’ treating doctors, they are told by Blue Cross
that they must wait for the cure, suffer serious liver damage, and only
then will they be eligible for Harvoni. No known medical study supports
this decision—and no part of Shima’s insurance policy grants Blue Cross this arbitrary authority.
Labels: access to treatment, blue cross, lawsuit