Greg Jefferys Hepatitis C blog deals with all the issues associated with hepatitis C
Today I posted a letter to US President Joe Biden about Hepatitis C treatment in the USA. Quite a few people thought it was a bit of a joke or maybe I was grand-standing. Others thought it might be a waste of time…. So why did I write to Joe Biden?
The idea to write to the US president rose in my mind a couple of weeks back when a shipment of generic Sovaldi one its way to a young father of three was seized by US Customs and destroyed.
US Customs seized and destroyed this young man’s medication without even having the courtesy to contact him and ask him about his situation… they didn’t even bother to let him know they had seized his meds.
Then, a week later, a shipment of Hep C meds to a young single mother was also seized and destroyed.
Both these people were utterly devastated.
It is not morally or ethically or legally right that US Customs should seize and destroy Hep C medication intended for personal use.
Please let me be clear… Importing Hep C medication into the USA for Personal Use is not illegal!
Dear Mr President
Figures from the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that more than 2 million people in the USA live with a potentially fatal chronic Hepatitis-C infection. However the actual number could be above 4 million, as many people with Hepatitis-C do not realise that they carry the infection. Every year in the USA, approximately 10,000 people die because of Hepatitis-C.
The cost to the patient for Hepatitis-C treatment is higher in the USA than anywhere else on Earth, and ranges between $15,000 and $80,000 depending on the medication required.
Many US citizens cannot afford the health insurance that potentially covers this cost, nor afford to buy Hepatitis-C treatment itself in the USA. As a result, and due to Hepatitis-C’s potentially fatal consequences, they turn to overseas suppliers who offer exactly the same medications for between $550 and $750.
I run a Hepatitis-C Buyers’ Club that helps US citizens access affordable Hep C treatment from FDA and WHO certified suppliers.
Since 2015, my Buyers’ Club has helped thousands of sufferers in the USA to cure the disease. There are many instances where this action has been the difference between life and death.
Recently, US Customs has begun seizing and destroying Hepatitis-C medication that has been ordered by US citizens. This is occurring arbitrarily, with the patient being uninformed of the seizure, and being given no right of appeal against the decision to destroy their medication.
This is devastating for people who are desperate to cure this debilitating disease.
Only this week, the medication of a single-mother with a six-year-old child was seized by US Customs.
She had been so excited by the prospect of finally being able to cure her Hepatitis-C that she, literally, wept with joy when informed that her medication was on the way to her from India.
However, when her medication reached the USA, it was seized by US Customs. Customs did not even have the courtesy to inform her of the seizure.
She was heartbroken when she eventually learned what had happened.
Mr President, millions of US citizens are suffering long term ill-health, and death, because the US Customs Service is blocking their access to life saving medication.
You seem to be a compassionate man; can you please do something to improve this situation?
Many countries, including Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, etc. allow their citizens to import Hep C medication for personal use – why does the USA block access to affordable medical treatment for its citizens?
Senator Bernie Sanders once said:
“The pharmaceutical industry owns Washington.”
I hope that you will prove this to be untrue.