VHA–YES, WE HAVE NO HARVONI


freezing HellThis just in from member Mike. Fargo, North Dakota is officially out of Harvoni or you have to wait until Hell freezes over to get any. Mike reports it’s not even a normal wave off with red smoke. They say they have no money for it. Not only that, it’s a new transplant (liver) Mikey’s talking about that is on the wrong side of the triage line.

Think about this. If they allotted X dollars for Harvoni throughout the Fruited plain, stands to reason some of it would land in, of all places, Fargo. It has to be on VA’s radar. This is May 2015. Mikey’s a Vet. Mikey’s also  a Vet with a new liver being destroyed by the old Hep C virus still in his body. Make’s sense to protect the new liver with a bumper to bumper warranty right after you install it. Yeppers. Makes sense just about everywhere except at the Fargo VAMC.

Now, since I know a little bit about VA law, I’ll let you in on a little VHA secret. You can file a Notice of Disagreement on one of their shiny new  21-0958 forms and file it at your local Cheeseville or Newnan intake center. In it, you list the reasons why you need Harvoni and why it is oh-so -much- more- economical to fix it now rather than to wait and destroy a practically shiny new liver. You get Dr. Cecil to opine that to wait is to ensure a host of evil outcomes including cirrhosis of the new liver/ ascites/spider angioma/ esophageal varices just to get started.

Yes sirree, Bob. And you thought you could only file and appeal for benefits. We going into a whole new realm of litigious innovations. HCVets are at a crossroads for a cure and VHA is pulling out the empty pockets and signaling the LZ is too hot for the dustoffs to come in.

Maybe we need to get an advance on the docket because if we wait the traditional amount of time now, we’ll be dead before we get a docket number to sit on the Group W bench.

hARVONI budgetThe newsflash from Sam in Palo Alto is garbled. We’re gonna start you on it any week now. Maybe next week. Maybe the week after.

Houston has it. American Lake Tacoma apparently has it for everyone but me. Seems that it depends on where you live and if you have an autoimmune disorder or a migraine this week. They have it in Baltimore but not at the VA. Jimmy Durante would be proud were he still alive.

P.S. Randal and another Vet  are getting it in Denver but they don’t trust old Randy not to sell it to the highest bidder so they only give him a two-week supply and make him drive 70 miles one-way to pick it up. Only at the VA, ladies and gentlemen. Only to America’s sick defenders.

About asknod

VA claims blogger
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12 Responses to VHA–YES, WE HAVE NO HARVONI

  1. Redcloud says:

    I used the Gilead Support Path that cdneh writes about.
    They paid for Harvoni and I didn’t pay anything for it. It was all free.
    The phone number for them is 1-855-769-7284.

  2. cdneh says:

    Gilead has a Support Path, for people needing help with the cost to get this drug. The phone number for them is 1-855-769-7284. There are a few people on a support forum I am aware of who have ended up not paying anything at all for it.

    • SPrice says:

      Support Path is for people who have no insurance or medical coverage and veterans have the VA. So they wouldn’t qualify, unless ….a fairy makes the VA disappear.

      • Redcloud says:

        One can have Medical insurance and still qualify for Support Path.
        I have Medicare, Supplemental Medicare Insurance, and VA (SC 100% P&T)
        I qualified for Support Path.

  3. kel says:

    Well, having read the entire book (AskNod), and following his trials and tribulations with VA, I saw the writing on the wall early in.
    When the so called liver specialists at my local VAMC started off talking budgetary numbers in terms of dollars vs. numbers of Vets they can treat successfully with Harvoni, I knew it was time to go plan B.
    My plan B was to use my blue cross.
    Why the heck is it that an insurance company based on profit will approve Harvoni overnight, but VHA shuffles and dances?
    Things that make you go Hmmm.

  4. J.Mark Olsen says:

    I think I’m missing the point.

    • hepper74 says:

      J.Mark Olsen – I believe the point here is that the VA in Fargo, ND is telling Mike that he should basically get on with his life because they have spent enough money on him what with the cost of a liver transplant being so expensive. Last time I checked the VA hospitals do not have to pay for the drug. It should be allotted to the hospitals according to need. Somewhere in VA land me smells a dead rat!

      • SPrice says:

        They don’t have to pay for the drugs because they were treating people as part of studies! So now that the studies are finished, the VA has no Harvoni. HOWEVER, they have Vpack + Ribavirin 12-24 weeks.

        As part of another study I’m sure.

  5. SPrice says:

    I think they’re lying about having spent all the money. Because there’s a part in the Newsweek article where Dr Ross says, “Since the beginning of 2013 more than 14,000 patients have been treated with the new class of antivirals”

    Sovaldi was approved by the FDA December 2013 and Harvoni was approved October 2014. So how could the VA start treating patients at the beginning of 2013 if the meds weren’t even approved yet?

    So he either lied about when they started treating OR they treated them as part of clinical trials. In which case he lied about how much they’ve spent treating vets because you don’t pay for meds when you participate in clinical trials.

    So checked and found that several of Gilead’s Sovaldi studies list VA clinics as participants.

  6. cdneh says:

    Where was his transplant done? My husband had to get the transplant team to go after our local VA to get it.

  7. John King says:

    The government has plenty of money to send special forces to kill some ISIS member deep in Syria but no money for veterans health care. Money to kill but no money to heal. The VA is just a charity in the guise of a health care system. A cheap charity at that.

  8. david j murphy says:

    Tell him to move to san antonio,according to my doc they are putting transplant folks to the front of the line. At least they did for me.

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