The new treatments for hepatitis C should now begin to become available

From today, new direct-acting antiviral medicines to treat chronic Hepatitis C should start to be made available to eligible patients in England within the NHS, a much broader group of people lving with hepatitis C than were initialy provided with treatment under the Early Access Scheme. These treatments are fast acting, relatively side-effect free and have been shown to free the majority of patients of the virus. The new treatments adoption within the NHS follows recommendations made by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in November 2015 which are now coming into practice. 

The drugs now approved for use as part of new treatment regimens are:

  • Harvoni
  • Daklinza and Sovaldi
  • Viekierax with or without Exviera

People with hepatitis C genotypes 1 and 4 will have a broad entitlement to the new treatments. Those living with genotype 3, access to Daklinza and Sovaldi has been restricted to those with more advanced liver damage due to cost-effectiveness. This still leaves many patients who have genotypes 2 and 3 lacking access to new treatments.

To see what treatments should be available to you, look at the Trust’s guide here.    

In a survey conducted about the launch of the new treatments, 72% of clinicians stated that they believe total eradication of the virus will be possible within the next twenty years as a result of these medical advances.

If you are struggling to understand what treatment you can expect, please call our helpline on 0845 223 4424 or 020 7089 6221 from a mobile. It is open from 10.30 to 4.30, Monday to Friday.