KUALA LUMPUR: A new affordable Hepatitis C treatment – with Malaysian involvement in clinical trials – has shown a 97% cure rate and is able to treat the most severe form of the disease.
The treatment, which uses the drug ravidasvir in combination with a generic version of sofosbuvir, has been shown to be safe and effective, with extremely high cure rates for patients including hard-to-treat cases, according to interim trial results.
The results were presented by the non-profit research and development organisation Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) at the International Liver Conference in Paris.
"As hepatitis C has become a major public health concern in Malaysia, it is crucial to increase access to treatment for the benefit of the nation," said Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah (pic) in a press release issued by the DNDi on Thursday (April 12).
In September 2017, The Star reported that the Government announced it had issued a "government-use" license on sofosbuvir to allow 400,000 Hepatitis C patients in Malaysia to access generic version of the drug in public hospitals.
Tthe new combination drug announced by DNDi will be able to treat Genotype 3, which is the most severe form of Hepatitis C.