Advocacy groups criticize pricing of hepatitis C drug

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com November 12 2002 12:00 AM ET

AIDS and hepatitis advocacy groups last week sent a letter to drugmaker Hoffmann-LaRoche criticizing the company for the high cost of its new hepatitis C medication Pegasys, the Newark Star-Ledger reports. The drug, approved by the Food and Drug Administration in October, will cost more than $14,000 per year. The groups, including Project Inform, the Hepatitis C Action and Advocacy Coalition, the AIDS Treatment Data Network, and the Treatment Action Group, threatened to draw congressional and media attention to the pricing of the medication if the company does not voluntarily reduce the price of Pegasys. Hoffmann-LaRoche spokesperson Charles Alfaro said that the company has not yet received the letter and therefore could not comment on its contents. He added that Pegasys is "priced competitively."