HIV patients and
AIDS advocates speaking to the Washington State
Governor's Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS this week
said many low-income HIVers in the state are having
problems with the new Medicare prescription drug
program, including an inability to get certain
medications because they're not covered by
participating insurers, the Seattle Times reported.
Cumbersome preauthorization paperwork for some drugs
also is resulting in treatment delays, according to
testimony at the advisory council meeting. And some
HIV patients are unable to afford the copayments for their
drugs, according to AIDS health care advocates.
are particularly worrisome for HIV patients, as missed
doses can lead to the development of drug-resistant virus
and treatment failure, the advocates told the panel.
A spokesman for
the Seattle office of the federal Centers for Medicare
and Medicaid Services said the agency is working to minimize
problems in accessing anti-HIV drugs through the new
prescription medication benefit. (The Advocate)
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