The fact is that when the FDA approves the new drugs for treatment of HCV, then when a doctor prescribes it, the insurance will cover it (subject to the usual pre-requisites of pre-approval and dudctables, etc.)
I would think this process will only become streamlined as the HCR (health care reform) becomes implemented.
you make a good point Dave. It is cheaper to use a treatment with better outcome then treat twice. There is no doubt that insurance will cover for those traditional tx didn't work for. It's just hard to predict insurance, common sense is not always in the forefront. In the end a doctor can appeal it and get it approved. There are ways around get auth and doctors know the ropes.
I think you covered it from all angles and that the insurance companies wil cover it.
Andiamo and Susan400 may know from personal experience about the approval of ribavirin back in the mid-nineties. Maybe PM them.
Here's a thread that is a fun read that brings up some interesting takes on the introduction of new drugs but doesn't answer your question :(:
ttyl when i have time and will try to actually be helpful. :)