Cost in the way of a cure for hepatitis C

Christopher Cummins, 42, believes he contracted hepatitis C through blood transfusions at birth. Last year, his insurance paid for a $100,000 treatment that eradicated the virus.

Dee’s liver is scarred, but just a bit too healthy for her insurance to foot the bill for the new medications that cure hepatitis C more than 90 percent of the time.

The Butler County resident, who suspects she got the virus getting a tattoo, was recently told by her doctor to come back in a year.

John, a retired small-business owner from Washington County who was given blood in the early 1990s, was also denied the antivirals. Now, as he watches a friend grow weak from liver cancer, he fears he’s glimpsing his future.

An appeal to a pharmaceutical company is Jennifer’s last shot at treatment after the insurance company denied her three times. The 34-year-old office manager – who said she gave up her heroin habit nine years ago – can barely make it through the workday because of fatigue. 

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