- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 27, 2015

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - State officials say Missouri’s Medicaid program will save an estimated $4.2 million in fiscal year 2016 by using a newer, cheaper drug to treat hepatitis C.

The state joined a group of 25 other states to receive rebates on Viekira from drug maker AbbVie. The state in most cases will provide that drug instead of Gilead Science’s Sovaldi in an agreement announced Monday.

The expensive treatment with Sovaldi, about $84,000 for a normal course, was cited as one driver of increased Medicaid costs for the state in 2015 by the state budget director.

Republican lawmakers have said the state should work to better control drug costs within the program.

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