26th August 2015
Its been difficult getting motivated to write in this blog, not for lack of things to write about but because I’m spending so much time answering emails that the thought of more screen time is not appealing. I make it a point to clear all emails every day so that they don’t build into a huge backlog, so last night I was up until eleven.
Yesterday I spent the afternoon up the Huon River trout fishing. It was a spectacular day, sun shining down through clear blue skies highlighting the snow capped mountains of Tasmanian Southern Wilderness, golden wattle flowers everywhere. No trout caught but a magic day.
In Australia, where the publicity being generated around the prices of Hep C meds and associates issues has been quite intense over the past 6 weeks we are seeing interesting things happening.
Firstly it is much easier now for people to get prescriptions for Indian generic Hep C medicines from their GPs. There a still a lot of doctors who will not help their patients with this but I guess about 50% now will. This compares very favorably with the USA and the UK where 99.9% of doctors still refuse to write their patients a prescription for generic Hep C meds.
A number of liver specialists and Liver clinics will now also support patients using the Indian drugs to cure themselves. But still a number of major liver clinics refuse to support these patients. In Melbourne, Canberra and Hobart there is across the board support. In Sydney one major liver clinic supports patients and the other refuses to. In Brisbane there is no support from that liver clinic, in deed the feedback I have received is that they refuse to have anything to do with India generics... Why?
Another interesting thing is that patients asking advice about whether or not to use Indian generics to treat their Hep C are being told by their health care providers that they should not do this because the new drugs are going to become available on the PBS in two or three months. Which is what they have been saying for more than 12 months now. And which I personally don’t believe. Indeed I believe that this delaying tactic has its source in pharmaceutical companies. Its that old delaying tactic. In two or three months patients will be told.
“Oh the new Hep C medicines will be out in a couple of months, three at the most.”
And when that time comes around they will be told. “Oh they are just around the corner, just wait another month or two.”
Meanwhile people’s livers were healthy enough are now getting cirrhosis.
I was spun the same rubbish by Hepatitis Australia a year ago and if I had waited I would now have cirrhosis or liver cancer.
Why wait for help that might never come when you can help yourself now?
The other thing that these so called Hepatitis Advocates like Hepatitis Australia (Who all receive hundreds or thousands of dollars in “ sponsorship” from the drug companies) saying is that the treatment will not be triaged. That is to say they are saying that the new treatment will be available to all.
WHAT A LOAD OF CRAP!!!! (whoops am I getting rabid??? I can not even blame the Ribavirin anymore!)
Even the presently available and much cheaper Interferon treatment is triaged. Nowhere on this planet is there a single country providing these new meds through any type of health insurance, whether public or private, where that treatment is not triaged. In most countries the absolute best figures are that about 5% of people with Hep C will get access to these new Hep C drugs. If you are not sick enough to get access then you will just have to wait around until you get sick enough. Until you get cirrhosis, until you liver is irreparably damaged. But don’t get too sick because you will not qualify then either.
But the drug companies will make their obscene profits anyway, regardless of who gets sick and who dies.
So do you wait a couple of months and see if it’s true. Then wait a couple of more months to see if you get sick enough to qualify for the treatment. And while you wait there few more months the virus is doing a bit more damage to your liver.
Or do you do something now and clear that virus now rather than wait and wait and wait!