Breakthrough treatments for hepatitis C have given millions of patients the opportunity to be cured, and specialized care from Accredo® specialty pharmacy helps deliver on the promise.
Historically, hepatitis C drugs have shown limited results outside of clinical trials. While newer medications demonstrate excellent results in controlled environments, we looked to validate the “real world” efficacy of products dispensed by Accredo when paired with disease-specific support through our Hepatitis C Therapeutic Resource CenterSM (TRC).
Study finds notable cure rates
Using a sample of 1,305 Accredo patients with hepatitis C – 551 taking Harvoni® (ledipasvir/sofosbuvir) and 754 taking Viekira PakTM (ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir; dasabuvir) – Accredo researchers surveyed the prescribing physicians four months after therapy completion to determine the sustained virologic response (SVR), or cure rate, for these patients.
Of the patients sampled, we identified a 96% cure rate, which is consistent with results reported in clinical trials. Patients in this study received the added benefit of disease- and drug-specific education from Accredo clinicians in the hepatitis C TRC.
Specialized care improves adherence
Hepatitis C can be a difficult condition for patients to manage, particularly during the course of treatment – and when patients stop their hepatitis C therapy early, they may need to restart treatment from the beginning, potentially costing plans and patients tens of thousands of dollars.
Through Accredo, patients receive personalized care from a team of specialty pharmacists, nurses and other clinicians in the Hepatitis C TRC. Patients are counseled on therapy options, managing side effects and maintaining adherence to treatment.
Cure made possible by bold action
Until Express Scripts introduced the Hepatitis Cure Value Program® on Jan. 1, 2015, the cost of treatment forced many plans to restrict treatment to patients with advanced fibrosis, advanced cirrhosis or other severe manifestations of the disease. Patients in earlier stages of hepatitis C were forced to wait until their health worsened, knowing that a cure existed but blocked from receiving the most appropriate medication.
Through our unique clinical care model, our bold action had an impact beyond Express Scripts’ plans, creating a ripple effect through the marketplace. We estimate that our action drove $4 billion in total healthcare savings across the nation in the program’s first year alone.
The success of these cure rates underscores the importance of collaboration between payers, specialty pharmacies and pharmaceutical manufacturers to ensure appropriate and cost-effective therapies are identified and patients are supported by a quality care model.
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