[Des Moines Register] State paying for pricey pill to treat Hepatitis C

Sep 8, 2014

The state of Iowa has started paying $1,000 per pill for a new drug targeting hepatitis C, but officials don’t plan to buy the medication for every person who carries the virus and qualifies for public health care.

The issue could be particularly acute for the state prison system, because more than 10 percent of its inmates are infected with hepatitis C.

The prison system recently started paying to treat two inmates with the new drug, called Sovaldi. The total cost to treat them is expected to hit $147,000, said Dr. Harbans Deol, the corrections department’s medical director.

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