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Author Topic: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?  (Read 8376 times)

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Offline shootingforzero

  • Member
  • Posts: 30
    • shooting for zero
Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« on: May 25, 2015, 07:48:18 pm »
I'm about to start a 12-week, no Ribavarin, course of Viekira Pak.

My doctor suddenly and unexpectedly offered me a free voucher for Viekira Pak (she said each provider in their office had gotten one from AbbVie). Turns out it's some kind of trial program.

I'm GT 1b with stage F1-2 fibrosis. Tried three times to get Harvoni covered and kept getting denied due to not having "enough" liver damage.

Don't get me wrong, I'm thrilled to finally be getting treatment, not to mention for free.
But also a bit confused about why this is being offered for free, since it's already on the market.
I suppose they're studying real-world efficacy?
There's not much info on it. Just that it's some kind of study.
I'm slightly suspicious of why I was chosen. Is it because I'm relatively healthy and they want to skew results. (Sorry if I sound paranoid...)

I'm curious if anyone else was offered, or is part of the same trial program?


------------------------------
35 years old, female
GT 1b, F1-2

5/28 2015: Started treatment with Viekira, 12-weeks, without ribavarin

Pre treatment: AST 35 ALT  33 VL: 2 million IU/ml
Week 4:      AST 19  ALT  11 VL: <1.18 IU/ml detected
Week 8:      AST 18  ALT  13 VL: <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Week 12:    AST  18  ALT  11 VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Post treatment:
EOT 4:        AST  16 ALT 12  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
EOT 12:      AST 18  ALT 11  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected

Offline sapphire101

  • Member
  • Posts: 238
  • "Stop worrying and start living"
Re: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2015, 10:40:22 pm »
Hmmmm just because we are paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get us right?
I have not heard of the free voucher, but I would grab it and run!
Usually there are some co-pays etc and this is probably augmenting the program. Abbvie wants to get a bigger share of the market and you are probably benefitting. This is most likely something new and not many others will have been offered it yet.

Viekira Pak has been extended to cover all patients and this is why I was able to obtain it with my fibrosis level of 1 and good labs. Abbvie/viekira pak made a deal with my insurance in December 2014 and this allowed me to be covered. I was one of the first in my area to get this treatment. If not, I would have not been approved for harvoni (only covering high fibrosis levels on my insurance).

There are more of us vikierans all the time and later this year other medications will also be FDA approved. My hope is that this will increase the free vouchers and maybe yours is the first of many.

Sapphire101
Genotype 1a Fibrosis level 1
Viekira Pak with ribavirin 12 weeks
Pre treatment  VL  1.7 million, AST 45 ALT 65
EOT VL not detected, AST 21 ALT 21
12 week SVR not detected,24 week SVR not detected.
Cured! Class of 2015

Offline shootingforzero

  • Member
  • Posts: 30
    • shooting for zero
Re: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2015, 10:54:41 pm »
sapphire101, thanks for the input.

I'm definitely taking it. My meds should be arriving tomorrow.
Fingers xed...

You're probably right about it being an effort to grow their market share.

It feels almost like a freebie promotion (directed at the doctor, not me).
Which is so strange to receive after trying so hard to get Harvoni covered by my insurance, to no avail.

Still very curious who else out there has gotten one of these vouchers.
Please chime in!
------------------------------
35 years old, female
GT 1b, F1-2

5/28 2015: Started treatment with Viekira, 12-weeks, without ribavarin

Pre treatment: AST 35 ALT  33 VL: 2 million IU/ml
Week 4:      AST 19  ALT  11 VL: <1.18 IU/ml detected
Week 8:      AST 18  ALT  13 VL: <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Week 12:    AST  18  ALT  11 VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Post treatment:
EOT 4:        AST  16 ALT 12  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
EOT 12:      AST 18  ALT 11  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected

Offline shootingforzero

  • Member
  • Posts: 30
    • shooting for zero
Re: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2015, 07:58:05 pm »
Update:
I asked the ProCeed nurse about the vouchers for the free trial program.

She basically said it's promotional. AbbVie wants to convince as many health care providers as possible to prescribe Viekira Pak instead of Harvoni, as Gilead still has way more market shares. So they give a few away for free to show that it works well.

I'm guessing with the price being virtually the same as Harvoni and the fact that everyone but us GT 1b:ers need to take Viekira Pak with Ribavarin, AbbVie may be struggling a little to move it.

Either way, I'm thrilled to be on it. Started taking it yesterday. Fingers xed that it will work. (Based on the clinical trials my odds should be good.)
------------------------------
35 years old, female
GT 1b, F1-2

5/28 2015: Started treatment with Viekira, 12-weeks, without ribavarin

Pre treatment: AST 35 ALT  33 VL: 2 million IU/ml
Week 4:      AST 19  ALT  11 VL: <1.18 IU/ml detected
Week 8:      AST 18  ALT  13 VL: <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Week 12:    AST  18  ALT  11 VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Post treatment:
EOT 4:        AST  16 ALT 12  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
EOT 12:      AST 18  ALT 11  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected

Offline w_ink

  • Member
  • Posts: 31
Re: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2015, 10:28:47 pm »
My doc also called me out of the blue and offered my the V-pak free meds voucher. My insurance had denied both Harvoni and V-pak. The 12-week supply of V and Ribavarin is sitting in my fridge, and my doc has no open appointments for 2 and a half weeks. I'm hoping they can squeeze me in. I want to start NOW!  I'm 1a, probably got the HCV in 1976, and my viral load has increased from 3.5 million when I was diagnosed in 2007 to over 9 million a few months ago. My liver enzymes have always been normal and my fibrosis score is 1.
w_ink: 56-years old, female
1976: contracted hep B, likely co-infected with HCV
2007: diagnosed
2011: accepted into clinical trial, dropped out when the required biopsy resulted in a huge hematoma
Genotype: 1a
Fibrosis: 1
Start of treatment with V-Pak and RIBA: 6/25/2015
ALT at start=31; AST at start=24
HCV RNA at start=18,188,000 IU/mL; HCV Log 10=7.260
ALT at 2 weeks=13; AST at 2 weeks=13
HCV RNA at 2 weeks=50 IU/mL; HCV Log 10=1.699
HCV RNA at 8 weeks=Undetected

Offline shootingforzero

  • Member
  • Posts: 30
    • shooting for zero
Re: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2015, 01:48:15 am »
Welcome aboard, w_ink!
Such a strange position to be in, no? First being denied and then getting Viekira for free.
Not complaining of course. I'm 6 weeks into treatment and feeling pretty much normal, so far.

I noticed another person on these forums just started Viekira through the voucher program. Makes me wonder how many people are actually getting Viekira through insurance.
On a related note, I stumbled across a forum for drug reps where the AbbVie people were all freaking out over their low sales and making tasteless jokes about it, because Harvoni gets all the action sales-wise. Meanwhile here all of us are, desperate to get any drug.
------------------------------
35 years old, female
GT 1b, F1-2

5/28 2015: Started treatment with Viekira, 12-weeks, without ribavarin

Pre treatment: AST 35 ALT  33 VL: 2 million IU/ml
Week 4:      AST 19  ALT  11 VL: <1.18 IU/ml detected
Week 8:      AST 18  ALT  13 VL: <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Week 12:    AST  18  ALT  11 VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
Post treatment:
EOT 4:        AST  16 ALT 12  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected
EOT 12:      AST 18  ALT 11  VL <1.18 IU/mil undetected

Offline w_ink

  • Member
  • Posts: 31
Re: Anyone else get a Viekira Pak Trial Program voucher?
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2015, 03:42:25 am »
Oooh, that's interesting about the AbbVie reps. It's ridiculous that sick people can't get the medicine that can cure them. If hep C were as contagious as chicken pox, maybe then we'd all be getting Harvoni/VPak free. (I once fleetingly thought about robbing a pharmacy...I kid, I kid.) I feel really lucky that my doctor offered me the voucher. For people trying to obtain treatment, the best advice I can offer is to be persistent with doctors, as well as pharmaceutical and insurance companies.

Glad you're feeling so well, ShootingforZero! I hope my few side effects will fade. I'm drinking as much water as I can, taking the pills in the middle of meals, and forcing myself to go on a 2 or 3 mile hike every day with my dog, which I had been doing regularly before I started the medicine. Going up hills is much more difficult now. But it's nothing when I think about finally being clear.
w_ink: 56-years old, female
1976: contracted hep B, likely co-infected with HCV
2007: diagnosed
2011: accepted into clinical trial, dropped out when the required biopsy resulted in a huge hematoma
Genotype: 1a
Fibrosis: 1
Start of treatment with V-Pak and RIBA: 6/25/2015
ALT at start=31; AST at start=24
HCV RNA at start=18,188,000 IU/mL; HCV Log 10=7.260
ALT at 2 weeks=13; AST at 2 weeks=13
HCV RNA at 2 weeks=50 IU/mL; HCV Log 10=1.699
HCV RNA at 8 weeks=Undetected

 


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