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Despite guidance from the federal government, most state Medicaid programs continue to deny hepatitis C treatments to beneficiaries, although more states are gradually easing restrictions, according to a new analysis.

Between November 2018 and July 2019, six states have either removed or eliminated restrictions based on a patient’s stage of liver disease, one state loosened rules that required patients to demonstrate they have not abused drugs or alcohol for a period of time before starting treatment, and six states scaled back prescribing restrictions for health care providers.


Overall, just 10 state Medicaid programs do not have any restriction, according to Phil Waters, an attorney at the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation of Harvard Law School, which conducted the latest analysis and had filed lawsuits against two state Medicaid programs over the issue. The center, by the way, receives industry backing.

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