How Gilead’s Hepatitis C Treatment challenges European Public Health Systems

10/10/2014 - 3 minutes

American Biotech company Gilead is selling its new drug Sovaldi since 2013, which brings significant breakthrough in Hepatitis C treatment. The high cost of the drug, up to €100 000, is a challenge for european Public Health system which tries to lower its overall cost for their public health system. 


Hepatitis C is an infectious disease caused by the Hepatitis C Virus. It affects liver and can lead to cirrhosis and ultimately to the dead of its host. 150 to 200 million people are affected worldwide with a majority able to live even if infected. Few treatments already existed such as a combination of peginterferon and ribavirin, and boceprevir or telaprevir added in some cases. Only 50-80% of people treated are cured and can have severe side effects.

Gilead’s Sovaldi is a major breakthrough in Hepatitis C Virus treatment. Unlike previous treatments, it cures 90% of patients without pain and side effects. Moreover, it last only 3 months enabling patients to start working again rapidly. But this efficiency has a price. 

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