Anti-viral drugs boost for patients with hepatitis C

NHS England announces £190 million of funding for new hepatitis C treatment options

New anti-viral drugs that help cure hepatitis C will be made available through NHS England’s early access scheme.

NHS England has set aside £190 million so that thousands of patients in England with cirrhosis caused by the hepatitis C virus will now be able to take new treatment options. The funding is on top of £40 million allocated for this treatment area last year.

Hepatitis C  – contracted most commonly as a result of using infected needles – affects liver function, and the new treatments can cure the virus and prevent further liver damage.

Hepatitis C Trust chief executive Charles Gore said: ‘This is a big step forward towards reversing the rising death toll from this disease. People living with hepatitis C have been waiting for this revolution in therapy with huge expectation, and now it has arrived we hope NHS England will move quickly to make it available to rapidly increasing number of patients.’

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