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Hepatitis C Treatment, Psychiatric Medications (SSRIs), Growth Factors, Hepatitis Vaccines (March 2009)

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a common and serious comorbidity among HIVpositive people in the United States; up to 30%—approximately 332,000— are living with HCV. Hepatitis C can lead to complications such as cirrhosis, liver cancer, and liver failure. HIV worsens HCV by increasing both the risk for, and rate of serious liver damage. In fact, end-stage liver disease from HCV is a leading cause of death among HIV-positive people in the U.S. But HCV can be treated with a combination of pegylated interferon (IFN) and ribavirin. Access to HCV treatment, supportive medications, and vaccines is crucial for coinfected people, and many rely on state ADAP Programs to provide them as well as antiretroviral therapy and treatment and prophylaxis for opportunistic infections. However, only 29 states cover both pegylated IFN and ribavirin, although several states carry one or the other. People living in states that do not cover pegylated IFN and/or ribavirin can apply to patient assistance programs from Roche and Schering Plough (below).

Roche Patient Assistance Foundation 1-877-75ROCHE (877-757-6243)

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