A new treatment regimen for hepatitis C is expected to hit the Egyptian market in November, in what the Ministry of Health has dubbed the “second generation of treatment,” Youm7 reported Saturday.
The new drugs are expected to be available at markets by November include Qurevo, Daklinza and Harvoni.
The three new “complex” drugs create a variety in medications, from which patients and doctors can pick a treatment plan.
“Proposing more than one alternative drug increases hope in treatment of many of the patients,” Hisham Ayoub, a professor of liver and gastrointestinal tract in Alexandria University told Youm7.
Hepatitis C patients in Egypt have been using a new Americann drug called Sovaldi since 2014, after the country signed a deal with the manufacturing company Gilead Sciences that provided Egypt with the medication at a 99 percent discount. Cairo has been subsidizing much of the remaining costs to provide treatment to citizens.
Egypt also plans to produce 1 million bottles of Sovaldi to help implement the government’s ambition in substantially reducing the number of hepatitis C patients by 2020.
Youm7 quoted former Minister of Health Ashraf Hatem as saying that the number of people infected with viral diseases reaches more than 150,000 each year, according to Youm7.
Egypt has the highest rate of hepatitis C infection in the world, according to the United Nations Population Fund; 14.7 percent of the population ages 15-49 have tested positive for the virus.