Hepatitis C is a viral disease that attacks the liver and it is contracted by tainted blood. According to an articled called “A cure for Hepatitis C” published by Maclean’s (2014), Hepatitis C “affects 300 000 Canadians and kills around 500 every year, more than other single viruses, including HIV/AIDS and seasonal flu”. Currently new medications might be used as a cure for this issue; however, the cost of early treatments is too expensive. Many people with Hepatitis C don’t know that they are infected since the disease in most cases, attacks the liver slowly and silently so that it doesn't show up symptoms. Public Health Agency of Canada (2014) estimates that 21% of individuals don’t know that they are contaminated with Hepatitis C virus. When an individual notices symptoms, he or she has already damaged the liver in a certain way. Hepatitis C can cause cirrhosis and liver cancer. In severe cases are needed a liver transplant.
One of the problems involving this illness is that ordinary treatment doesn’t have a high percentage of cure and side effects may not be tolerated for a bunch of people. Because of investments in HIV/AIDS research, there has been increased knowledge about Hepatitis C helping in development of new drugs with a higher percentage of cure. Nowadays, there are Galexos and Sovaldi in which are medicines for treating the disease in which cost respectively $39, 422 (cure rate up 80 percentage) and $55,000 (cure rate 90 percentage) (Buck, 2014).
Below is some information about Sovaldi extracted from its website.
Due to the majority of population with Hepatitis C are poor, the cure will not help them. It is not possible the government pays for the treatment for those citizens because “giving every hepatitis C-positive Canadian that treatment would cost an estimated $14 billion (Buck, 2014). Lastly, it is an interesting situation: the cure is available, but it seems the cure had never been found so far because of high prices. Therefore, just a few people get access to these drugs.
- Buck, G. (2014). A cure for hepatitis C. Maclean's, 127(30-31), p. 21.
- Public Health Agency of Canada. (2014, Jun 6). Hepatitis C: Quick facts. Retrieved from: www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/hepc/index-eng.php