Hepatitis C: An In-Depth Guide
General information on drug coverage and benefit programs offered by the provincial, territorial and federal governments can be found here.
Registered First Nations and recognized Inuit people may be able to access coverage for their hepatitis C medications through the Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) program. NIHB is a federal program that provides eligible First Nations and Inuit people with coverage for many prescription drugs and health services. People can contact NIHB by phone or mail at:
Non-Insured Health Benefits – Yukon Region
First Nations and Inuit Health
300 Main Street, Suite 100
Coverage for Hepatitis C Medications
In Yukon, hepatitis specialists or nurses can apply, on their patient’s behalf, for drug benefits from the Chronic Disease Program. This program is designed to assist people with chronic diseases, including hepatitis C, by providing them with financial assistance to cover the cost of their medications. For Social Assistance recipients, the cost of hepatitis C medications is automatically covered by this program.
The following hepatitis C medications are included in the Yukon drug formulary, a list of drugs that are eligible for coverage:
- peg-interferon and ribavirin
- Harvoni (ledipasvir and sofosbuvir)
- Holkira Pak (dasabuvir + ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir)
- sofosbuvir (taken in combination with peg-interferon and/or ribavirin)
- simeprevir (taken in combination with peg-interferon and ribavirin)
These hepatitis C medications require Exception Drug Status before they will be covered by the Chronic Disease Program or Pharmacare. To apply for coverage for these medications, a person can ask their specialist to complete and submit a written application to either the Chronic Disease Program or Pharmacare. The application will be reviewed by the Formulary Working Group to determine if the medications will be covered.
Some of the factors that may be considered when approving funding for hepatitis C medications include:
- whether or not an individual is living with chronic hepatitis C
- level of fibrosis
- HCV genotype
- a positive HCV RNA test
- HIV status
If the request is approved, the person will receive up to one full term of treatment.
If people would like more information about Pharmacare, the Chronic Disease Program or the Children’s Drug and Optical Program, they can call 1-867-667-5092.