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720656 tn?1311040235

Merck info

I just received an email from a local support Hep C group.
Hope this may help any looking for information on the release of Victrelis.

"Merck will begin shipping VICTRELIS to pharmacies within a week so that patients will have access to this new medication as soon as possible. In addition, the company is expanding its support of public awareness and education programs for chronic hepatitis C. Resources include coupons to help eligible patients with their medication cost, reimbursement support to help patients understand their insurance coverage for VICTRELIS, and 24/7 nurse phone support.

Separately, Merck will also add VICTRELIS to its patient assistance program through which eligible patients may be able to receive product free of charge."
14 Responses
96938 tn?1189799858
More good informatioin.

It would be nice to hear a large health insurer weigh in on the topic of the new meds....
Avatar universal

FIGuy....was just thinking the same thing...they are suspiciously quiet?
1491755 tn?1333201362
I just talked to Merck what uor doc told you is not true.  I spoke to Lorrain at Merck #800-674-6372 she said they just had a briefing on Victrelis (Bocep) this morning, the drug is shipping today as noted by Magnum and there is no "rationing".  She also said the doc because they don't secretively inform docs about there drugs.  A web-site will be up next week www.victrelis.com offering product info as well as coupons.

Please call them it might be nice to hear it directly from them, ask for Lorrain she was super nice and informitive.

I made that call for adiamo who's doc told her they will be "rationing it"  which IS NOT TRUE according to Merck, the post was to her, but I thought it appropriate to post it here as well.
179856 tn?1333547362
Oh please let them have patient assistance plans for Susan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Avatar universal
Do you think that these doctors are saying this for their own scheduling and monitoring of patients and not necessarily due to the availability of the medication?  Seems like Merck would want to get as much out there as possible before the other drug is available and cuts into their profits.

Just a thought.
179856 tn?1333547362
Honestly I think in the beginning it's going to be an insurance issue - I had wanted to extend treatment to 72 weeks after the Tapias Sanchez study said it would increase my odds......however.....Aetna told me it was 'experimental' and if I needed later they would pay for a transplant but not the extra medications. I got them via a patient assistance plan since I was denied but they paid for all my tests and my doctors and everything.

It made no sense to me and I hope it doesnt happen here but......insurance is a hassle  - maybe not doctors discretion but getting it to every pharmacy and plan that there is. I mean seriously how could they ship THAT much of it at once?

I think it will matter at first who you are (in your staging) where you live and if it is available at your pharmacy. But that is just guessing completely on my part.

I do think it will be different in just a few months or maybe even weeks.......but I dont think it will happen by the end of the week (exaggeration but you know what I mean).
Avatar universal
That makes sense.  What a pain all of this is going to be.  :0(
Avatar universal
Just for the heck of it, I called my insurance comapny BCBS. Was told typically the drug would be available for prior approval approx 1 week after FDA approval--if that helps (was told this by Curascript)PS: fella said he was recieving a number of calls about both merck and vertex drug.
Avatar universal
Glad you called BCBS that is my insurance as well and I was wondering how that was going to work. So basically we need prior approval to get the new drug? and there wont be any trouble with them approving it, did i get that right? thanks
Avatar universal
I didn't get the impression that the new drugs would be excluded from drug formulary for BCBS. But prior approval most certainly will be required, just as it is now with SOC. Nows the time to get the script from the doc and begin the prior approval process if your in a hurry. Prior approval usually takes a few week to get the letter in my experience..As Deb, I had to con them into 72 weeks of tx, but I have to admit, in the end they approved.
PS: Curascript said the drugs were already being shipped, they expected them in the next few days..Told me to call back Fri., so I will, just to get further info for y'all.
Curascript handles the specialty drugs in my area for BCBS, could be a different co in your area
1253246 tn?1332073310
Did BC/BS say anything about co-pays???Wondering if it will be your normal copay???
1491755 tn?1333201362
The drug shipped today and is available.  
Avatar universal
Thanks James, that is what Curascript told me as well.
Cindy, copays will solely be determined by your policy, can't help you much there, sorry
223152 tn?1346978371
I am with BCBS of Texas and checked the website yesterday to see if it was posted.  It was not, but this is from their Q&A

Can I use a medication that my doctor prescribes if it is not on the Drug List?
Yes, drugs not listed are covered on the 3-Tier prescription drug plan. You have benefit coverage for most drugs, even if they are not on the Drug List, however you will pay the highest copayment level (Tier 3).

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