In an era when legislators, pharmacy benefit managers and others continue to protest the high cost of hepatitis C drugs, new drugs to treat the disease are welcomed. FDA recently approved ombitasvir, paritaprevir and ritonavir tablets co-packaged with dasabuvir tablets (Viekira XR, AbbVie) to treat patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotype 1 (GT1) infection, including those with cirrhosis. AbbVie already markets Viekira Pak, which competes with Harvoni and Sovaldi (Gilead Sciences).
When Express Scripts and CVS Health announced their 2017 formularies on August 1, a common theme emerged among the healthcare giants: several blockbuster drugs will be removed from both companies’ formularies and lower-cost options such as biosimilars are being embraced.
FDA expanded the use of ombitasvir, paritaprevir, and ritonavir tablets; dasabuvir tablets without ribavirin (Viekira Pak, AbbVie) this week to treat patients with genotype 1b (GT1b) chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and compensated cirrhosis (Child-Pugh A).