FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 16, 2021
MO HealthNet launches Project Hep Cure to eliminate hepatitis C in Missouri’s Medicaid population
JEFFERSON CITY, MO – Today, the Department of Social Services MO HealthNet Division announced the launch of a new partnership, called Project Hep Cure, to eliminate hepatitis C virus (HCV) in an estimated 6,000 Medicaid participants who have not been treated for the disease. The treatment is available at no cost to MO HealthNet participants.
The new Project Hep Cure partnership with the Department of Health & Senior Services, Missouri Primary Care Association, and Show-Me ECHO will help connect and enlist provider participation to test and treat MO HealthNet participants who have HCV and the collaboration with AbbVie, a research-based global biopharmaceutical company, removes barriers to treatment and discounts HCV drug prices for MO HealthNet.
“People who have hepatitis C can have the disease for many years with no symptoms and unknowingly spread the infection to others,” said Kirk Mathews, MO HealthNet Acting Director and Chief Transformation Officer. “Curing hepatitis C means not only a healthier life for those MO HealthNet participants and stemming the spread of the disease, it also reduces the overall cost of hepatitis C to Missouri since fewer people will get the disease and there will be far fewer liver disease complications or liver transplants.”
In the past few years, new therapies have become available to effectively treat and cure people who have HCV with shorter treatment times and fewer side effects. Starting this month, MO HealthNet’s partnership with AbbVie makes it possible to treat participants with hepatitis C with MAVYRET®, a medication with a 98 percent cure rate, without prior authorization. It simply begins with a MO HealthNet participant visiting their health care provider.
“Previously, MO HealthNet providers had to go through a number of steps to prescribe a new hepatitis C drug, creating a barrier to treating everyone,” said Joshua Moore, MO HealthNet Director of Pharmacy. “This is a real game-changer for MO HealthNet providers who can now immediately prescribe MAVYRET® to treat and cure hepatitis C without prior authorization. It is as easy as prescribing an antibiotic and one trip to the pharmacy for the 8-week drug treatment to cure hepatitis C and stop the spread of the disease.”
The Department of Health & Senior Services, Missouri Primary Care Association, and Show-Me ECHO play a vital role connecting and enlisting the participation of providers to test and treat MO HealthNet participants who have HCV.
To find MO HealthNet participant and provider frequently asked questions, provider resources, and more information go to https://dss.mo.gov/mhd/hepc/.
The mission of the Department of Social Services is to empower Missourians to live safe, healthy, and productive lives. Visit dss.mo.gov to learn more about the Department of Social Services and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.