Magazine article Drug Topics

AIDS Groups to Craft Ways to Fund New Drugs

Magazine article Drug Topics

AIDS Groups to Craft Ways to Fund New Drugs

Article excerpt

Approximately three-quarters of state AIDS drug assistance programs (ADAPs) have added one or more of the new protease inhibitors (indinavir, ritonavir, and saquinavir) to their lists of covered drugs, according to a survey conducted by and among directors of the programs.

But in order to do so, some states have eliminated coverage of other drugs. Others have established, or are planning to establish, waiting lists or caps-or take alternate steps to restrict access and coverage. So reported the National Alliance of State & Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD).

A number of the state programs have seen a huge surge this year in both demand and costs, some more than doubling or tripling between Jan. 1 and July 1. These increases began before the protease inhibitors (Pls) were available and were due to the demand for and costs associated with earlier antiretroviral therapies that involved combination drug therapy, the NASTAD report stated. The addition of the Pls has only aggravated the problem, according to Joseph F. Kelly, deputy director of NASTAD, who prepared the report.

Thus, although all of the programs received an increase in funding under the Ryan White CARE Act-and many also from their own state governments-a large number are facing a shortfall in funds before the end of the Ryan White Act fiscal year next March 31. And some states that have not added the new drugs to their formularies say that doing so would cause them to suffer a shortfall. …

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