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When it was approved by the FDA in December 2013, Sovaldi represented a new era for treating hepatitis C patients. It was the first all-oral HCV medication that, for some types of HCV patients, offered near-perfect cure rates without difficult side effects.
Sovaldi's elevated cure rate, its short dosing period, and the promise of less severe side effects for many HCV patients propelled the drug to $2.3 billion in its first quarter on the market. While its safety and efficacy profile attracted tens of thousands of patients, Sovaldi's price tag of $84,000 was not met with open arms by private and public payers.
Clearly, Gilead Sciences had to create and execute a launch plan that would ensure Sovaldi found a place on payers' formularies, was accessible for those lacking coverage/resources and dominated the competition.
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Pharmaceutical; Health Care
Gilead Sciences; Merck