A Michigan woman claims in a proposed class action lawsuit that the state has unlawfully denied possibly life-saving treatment to thousands of Medicaid-eligible individuals infected with Hepatitis C. The 29-page case, filed against Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Executive Director Nick Lyon, alleges the plaintiff and thousands of other state residents with the virus have been denied a cure labeled by the Food and Drug Administration as a “breakthrough therapy” simply because they have not yet suffered “measurable and potentially irreversible liver damage.” Despite being approved by the FDA and “strongly urged” for use by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and the Infectious Disease Society of America—not to mention carried by the “overwhelming majority of commercial health insurers” and even Medicare— the ostensible Hepatitis C cure is denied to Medicaid-eligible individuals throughout Michigan simply because they fail to fit illegally imposed criteria, the lawsuit alleges.
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