Issue: December 2014
December 14, 2014
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Specialists Anticipate Preference for Newly Approved Combination to Treat HCV

Issue: December 2014
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Surveyed specialists said they would prescribe ledipasvir-sofosbuvir to a high proportion of patients with hepatitis C virus genotype 1, according to results of a survey conducted by Decision Resources Group.

Specialists said they would prescribe the NS5A inhibitor ledipasvir and nucleoside polymerase inhibitor sofosbuvir combination (Harvoni, Gilead Sciences) to patients with cirrhosis of the liver, regardless if the drug was listed on a nonpreferred formulary tier. Respondents said Harvoni has an advantage over competing treatment options in efficacy, treatment duration, safety and tolerability, according to the press release.

HCV Treatment Option 

Additionally, managed care organization pharmacy and medical directors reported prioritizing formulary inclusion of sofosbuvir (Sovaldi, Gilead Sciences) over simeprevir (Olysio, Janssen, Medivir) despite Sovaldi’s higher cost.

“Approximately four out of five surveyed physicians have either already contacted or plan to reach out to patients regarding the newest HCV treatment options,” Seamus Levine-Wilkinson, PhD, analyst for Decision Resources Group, said in the release. “As a result, uptake of novel HCV agents could surge as physicians treat the sizable number of warehoused patients.”

Harvoni was approved for HCV treatment by the FDA in October. It does not require interferon or ribavirin for administration, and its most commonly reported adverse events are fatigue and headache.