Gilead Sciences says its next generation drug to combat hepatitis C, slated to launch next month, will be more expensive than $1,000-a-pill Sovaldi, in part because the new treatment will be shorter and simpler. Gilead also struck a deal with Indian generic drugmakers to sell lower-cost versions of Sovaldi in poor countries.
Reuters: Gilead To Raise Price For New Hepatitis C Drug
The next generation version of Gilead Sciences Inc's $84,000 hepatitis C drug, already under fire for its record-breaking costs, is going to be even more expensive. Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs, declined to give an exact price for the new medicine, the first all-oral treatment for the virus which is expected to launch next month. The total cost of the current treatment is $95,000, which includes Sovaldi and two older medicines, ribavirin and interferon, according to Gilead. The price of the new drug would be based on that cost, Alton said in an interview (Beasley, 9/12).
The New York Times: Maker Of Hepatitis C Drug Strikes Deal On Generics For Poor Countries
The maker of one of the costliest drugs in the world announced on Monday that it had struck agreements with seven Indian generic drug makers to sell lower-cost versions of its $1,000-a-pill Hepatitis C drug in poorer countries (Harris, 9/15).
Also, a report about scant supplies of an increasingly popular alternative to hospital dialysis -
Los Angeles Times: Shortage Of In-Home Dialysis Solution Has Patients Worried
Joanna Galeas relies on an increasingly popular at-home alternative to treat her kidney failure. Galeas, a 30-year-old Los Angeles resident, is among tens of thousands of U.S. residents who use peritoneal dialysis at home. She fills her abdomen with a sterile solution that helps remove toxins from her blood, a function ordinarily performed by healthy kidneys. Now, Baxter International Inc., the nation's leading supplier of the home dialysis solution, says it can't keep up with demand and has started rationing the product, directing physicians to limit the number of new patients to whom they prescribe the treatment and reducing the size of shipments sent to existing customers (Pfeifer and Terhune, 9/12).
This article was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.