November 14, 2016
(STAT News) – A major reason is cost, with list prices for some 12-week treatment courses approaching $100,000. But a series of other forces helps explain why Kentucky is struggling to respond to the hepatitis C crisis, including a growing opioid epidemic that is fueling new cases and a changing patient base that is demanding hard choices be made about who gets treatment first. With opioid use seeding the spread of infectious disease across the country, this state could be a case study in how hepatitis C affects other areas, and what happens when demands for specialists, surveillance, and treatment outstrip the ability of health systems to respond.
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