Until recently, lack of efficacious and tolerable hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatments prompted patient warehousing until better treatment options became available. We investigated whether the introduction of ledipasvir/sofosbuvir precipitated patient return to clinics, thereby changing HCV clinic dynamics.
Online questionnaire responses indicated the volume of HCV patients followed, the proportion of warehoused patients and those who were proactively offered new options, methods for identifying and contacting patients, and insurance authorization/reimbursement-related information.
Of 168 practices surveyed, 19% indicated no patient warehousing in the previous 3 years; 81% had warehoused 40% of patients; 92% were able to handle their patient load; and 82% had not changed practices to accommodate more HCV patients in the previous 12 months. Of the 35% of patients who were ledipasvir/sofosbuvir-eligible, 50% already completed/are completing therapy, 21% were not treated due to insurance denial, and 19% were awaiting responses from insurance companies.
Launch of a new treatment did not overburden HCV practices. Patients eligible to receive new treatments were being treated, but pre-authorization processes and reimbursement denials reduced the numbers of treated patients.