Downward Trend Found in Sofosbuvir Adherence

Specialty Pharmacy Times, September/October 2014, Volume 5, Issue 5

During clinical trials, more than 95% of patients were able to achieve a functional cure on sofosbuvir, while only 2% of patients discontinued the treatment. However, the first evaluation of sofosbuvir’s use outside of the clinical trial setting showed a therapy discontinuation rate 4 times higher than in the trials.

HCV treatment—naïve patients were found to be more likely to discontinue treatment, which the study noted could have substantial implications for clinicians and patients.

The researchers examined discontinuation rates in nearly 2000 patients managed by the CVS Health pharmacy benefit management since December 2013. The overall discontinuation rate was approximately 8%.

The discontinuation rate for treatment-naïve patients who had not received prior treatment for HCV was at 8.7%. Previously treated patients who were presumed to have failed their initial therapy had a discontinuation rate of 5.3%.

“Despite the current plateau and decline in Sovaldi utilization, we expect to see another peak in spending for hepatitis C medications upon the release of the new all-oral treatment,” said Troyen A. Brennan, MD, chief medical officer of CVS Health, in a press release. “While the simplicity of the new treatment regimen may help reduce discontinuation rates, careful follow-up, such as that provided by pharmacies specializing in hepatitis C in conjunction with the patient’s physician, is still required to ensure patients are completing their course of therapy and deriving the maximum benefit.”