CF «Patients Ukraine» sent an open letter to the leaders of the State Expert Centre, which controls the registration of medicines in Ukraine, urging not to block, but accelerate the registration of the innovative medicines to combat hepatitis in Ukraine.
In case of registration of a number of drugs in Ukraine, the treatment course for viral hepatitis C (HCV) can be reduced to 12 weeks instead of 48. And due to the special price granted for our country, it will be possible to provide 2.5 times more patients with treatment for the state funds. Furthermore, the effectiveness of the innovative treatment is 92%, and patients easily tolerate it due to minimal side effects.
According to the Head of the Board of the CF «Patients of Ukraine» Dmytro Sherembey, the State Expert Center had the opportunity to register medicines that have all necessary international quality certificates a month ago, but wasted it and still continues to do it. — «We are dealing either with the lobbying of pharmaceutical companies, who will find themselves in disadvantageous positions in case competitors enter the market, or sabotage within the state institution. In any case, thousands of Ukrainian patients became hostages of circumstance. They will be able to receive treatment this year, if the State Expert Center registers 3 drugs of different manufacturing companies that have submitted documents to the State Expert Center for registration of the innovative medicines.» — said D. Sherembey.
The combat for accessibility of the innovative and effective viral hepatitis C treatment for Ukrainians lasts for several years. CF «Patients of Ukraine» has implemented a number of measures and reached, together with the Ministry of Health, during negotiations with pharmaceutical manufacturing companies, agreement regarding the special price for the drug on the territory of our state.
The patients’ position regarding the necessity of introduction of modern highly effective HCV treatment in Ukraine to replace the existing methods of treatment with pegylated interferon, which are used less and less in the world treatment practices, is supported by the expert and medical community. The corresponding document has been developed and submitted to the Ministry of Health in early May (Enclosure 1).
Generally, the problem of viral hepatitis has become increasingly important in recent years. According to public organizations estimates up to 8% of the Ukrainian population live with hepatitis C virus (HCV), which makes approximately 3 million people. The risk of being infected with hepatitis is ten times higher than with HIV, and it is often diagnosed at the stage of cancer or cirrhosis. If the virus is detected in time and the treatment with modern medicines is initiated, more than 90% of patients fully recover. Unfortunately, at the moment, effective drugs for HCV treatment remain inaccessible for the vast majority of the Ukrainian population because of their high price.
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