A state health agency is budgeting an extra $24 million this fiscal year, and a similar amount next year, to pay for costly hepatitis C drugs in Georgia’s Medicaid program.
The state is also expected to pay $14.1 million more this year, and $37.9 million in fiscal 2016, for lengthening the time between eligibility reviews for Medicaid and PeachCare beneficiaries, as required by the Affordable Care Act.
Those were among the financial projections made in a budget presentation Thursday for the board of the Georgia Department of Community Health, which runs the Medicaid and PeachCare programs in the state, as well as the state employee health plan. The presentation is the beginning of a long budgeting process for the agency.
The Community Health board approved the budget requests.
The hepatitis C drugs are considered breakthrough medications for patients. One drug, Sovaldi, has a 90 percent cure rate for newly infected patients — much better than previously available treatments for hepatitis C. full story