a University of Connecticut School of Medicine , Farmington , CT , USA.
b University of Connecticut Health Center , Farmington , CT , USA.
Direct-acting antiviral therapy is safe and cost-effective for the treatment of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. However, variability in drug payment rules represents a barrier to treatment that may disproportionately affect certain populations. We conducted a retrospective cohort study among HIV/HCV coinfected and HCV monoinfected patients using Kaplan-Meier and Fisher's exact test to analyze the time from the prescription of a direct-acting antiviral agent to delivery to the patient. Variables with significance p < .20 in univariate analysis were included in a Cox regression model. Factors associated with faster treatment were Infectious Diseases office setting (p = .01), public insurance payer (p = .01), and initial approval of requested regimen (p = .01). The presence of other liver disease was associated with delay in treatment (p = .05). Unrestrictive Medicare and Medicaid regulations resulted in more rapid delivery of medication compared to private payers. Fibrosis level, Child-Pugh class and HIV status did not significantly change time to treatment.