Epclusa (sofosbuvir and velpatasvir) – General Information (PDF)
Targeted Genotypes: 1 – 6 or mixed genotype infections
Approved by Health Canada and Covered by BC PharmaCare: Yes
Treatment Description: Epclusa is a short-course, interferon-free, hepatitis C treatment. It is made up of sofosbuvir and velpatasvir in the form of one pill that is taken once a day and can be prescribed with or without ribavirin. The treatment is the first pan-genotypic hepatitis C treatment* to be approved for use in Canada and BC PharmaCare covered treatment against all six hep C virus types.
Usage Warning: Patients with Bradycardia taking amiodarone can not take Epclusa. There have been reports of severe bradycardia (slow heart rate) or heart block (problems with conduction of electrical signals in the heart). Don’t take rifampin, St. John’s wort, or carbamazepine while taking Epclusa.
If you have ever had hepatitis B, the hepatitis B virus could become active again during and after taking Epclusa.
Daily Doses and Treatment Lengths:
- 12 weeks of the once-daily pill Epclusa for treatment-naive and treatment-experienced patients without liver cirrhosis or compensated liver cirrhosis
- 12 weeks of the once-daily pill Epclusa and ribavirin for treatment-naive and treatment-experienced patients with decompensated cirrhosis
SVR: 93% – 99%
Possible Side Effects when Taken Without Ribavirin:
- Fatigue (Tiredness)
Possible Side Effects when Taken With Ribavirin:
|Insomnia (Can’t sleep)||Diarrhea|
BC’s PharmaCare Eligibility for Epclusa
Epclusa is a limited coverage drug. To qualify for treatment coverage a patient must have ALL of the following:
- A prescription from a hepatologist, a gastroenterologist, an infectious disease specialist or other physician experienced with treating hepatitis C;
- Lab-confirmed hepatitis C genotype 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6;
- Lab-confirmed hepatitis C test done within the previous 12 months;
- NOT currently being treated with another hepatitis C direct-acting antiviral drug;
- A liver fibrosis stage F2 or greater OR less than F2 with the following:
- Co-infection with HIV or hepatitis B virus
- Post organ transplant (liver and/or non-liver organ transplant)
- Extra-hepatic manifestations5
- Chronic kidney disease stage 3, 4 or 5 as defined by National Kidney Foundation Kidney Disease outcomes Quality Initiative6
- Co-existent liver disease with diagnosis evidence for fatty liver disease (e.g., non-alcoholic steatohepatitis)7
- Diabetes receiving treatment with anti-diabetic drugs
- Women who are planning pregnancy within the next 12 months
Talk to your healthcare provider for more information or to start the treatment process.
Gilead’s Momentum Patient Assistance Program
Canadians prescribed Epclusa (sofosbuvir/velpatasvir) can request to be enrolled in the Gilead Momentum Program. For more information, contact your doctor, nurse, or call the Gilead Momentum Program at: 1-866-207-4267.