The disease burden of hepatitis C virus (HCV) is expected to more than double in the next two decades. Currently, there is very little information about the costs of HCV treatment for employers who pay for treatment and health plans that cover HCV patients. This study reports the medical costs of HCV for workers with health insurance. A retrospective claims data design was used for this study. A sample of HCV patients with health insurance was drawn from the inpatient, outpatient, and enrollment files of the MEDSTAT Group's MarketScan family of databases for 1993-1998. Patients were grouped into cohorts and studied for up to 2 years before and after HCV diagnosis. Sample size varies according to length of follow-up, peaking at 3, 077 patients enrolled for at least 6 months. In the first year following HCV diagnosis, average payments for HCV patients ($10, 925) were almost six times as high as payments for all patients in the MarketScan database ($1, 186). Doctors are encouraged to test high-risk patients to find HCV patients earlier in the course of their disease and to better manage their care in order to avoid unnecessary illness and expenses for this disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy