I felt odd the day I got my Sovaldi 7 weeks ago knowing others had Hepatitis C for 10 or 20 years and suffered through multiple treatments and here I was infected in October 2013 and by February 2014 I have medication in hand and was being treated. I also had hepatitis for 10-20 years but the people I am speaking about
had visual signs of it and they were battling it with Peg-Inteferon and Ribavirin while my hepatitis only reared its ugly head in October 20013...big difference between knowing you have it and suffering Interferon treatments like all the heroes before me.
As my wife is my witness, I cried within hours of my medication being delivered when I recalled the story of another forum member I won't name who was sick for many years and insurance would not cover them and here I was being covered under my wife's insurance, it really hurt my feelings and even today thinking about
that persons situation makes me tearful.
Just last week with my wife at the Hepatitis Support Centre I was told "You may already be clear of the virus"...and what did I say? tearfully I broke down and said "What about
the other's?"...at which point my wife interjected and explained to the nurse my feelings about
all this and how I felt it was unfair I was being treated and others at the same time were potentially dying when we have the cure...I couldn't say it myself due to emotions so the wife had too.
Believe me if I could somehow pay for others to be treated I would, If I could cover you under my insurance...I would. I agree with all my heart that the price of Sovaldi is totally UNFAIR and it hurts my feelings knowing someones insurance doesn't cover them when they have worked all their lives yet my wife's insurance covers me when she has only been employed their 5+ years...this my friends is UNFAIR and I agree 100% and I wish it wasn't this way.
When I was prescribed my Sovaldi+Ribavirin I learned it came with Peg-Interferon inside the package and they advised me to throw it out? I was shocked and though many people suffered with Interferon treatment I thought it was ridiculous to throw it out and since then have arranged to have the Peg they planned to throw away to be donated to a local compassion group at our Hepatitis Support Program. It might not be much but I am trying to do *anything* I can to help another infected with Hepatitis C
If I could do more I would and I've found the only way to repay back my good fortune somehow is if I can visit here when I am free and offer friendship and comfort to another person infected with Hepatitis that is scared for their life, like I was just a few months ago and all of you wonderful forum members helped me more than you'll ever know.
I learned from this group that I need not fear death, some of these people have been struggling for 10 years + and are still alive and instead what I need to do is be positive for myself and others on this forum because together we can beat this and perhaps we all can do our part even after we our cured to make sure Hepatitis treatment and the cure becomes widespread and affordable to all. Sure its possible I could have *died* but realistically it would have taken many years but many thanks to those that calmed me down originally.
This past weekend I also contacted a person from my local media and asked them if they wanted to do a story about
Sovaldi and the treatment. I informed them I would like to remain anonymous but felt it was my duty as one of the first being treated in this city to step forward even if anonymous and put the "bug in the ear" so to say and let not only the people of our city but our elected government know that we need to be offering this treatment to everybody regardless of income status.
I don't deserve this treatment anymore than the next guy, my circumstances and I guess *luck* in a way aligned the stars to make everything possible but believe me had my insurance not paid I would have refinanced my home to pay for this and to not have to suffer mentally inside knowing I have it, some may not think this is a big deal but it bothered me just knowing its inside.
I will forever think of this group and the people here, even when the treatment for me is over I won't just disappear and "Take the treatment and run" so to say...I love you all and you've helped me both mentally and physically during one of the toughest times of my life and while I may not be able to personally pay each one of you back I WILL be able to maintain a presence here and do my part to make someone else possibly end treatment feeling the same way I do with a positive outlook on life.
Together as a group we will become stronger but never forget that others will come along in the future and need help like we all did, its amazing what a few words typed by another human that is read just before bed or upon waking up will actually help them have a great day or sleep better because they aren't worrying, sometimes something as simple as a smiley can make a persons day when they have no support but this forum
Be a friend and support to users on this forum and you will forever feel good inside knowing you did your best to "Pay it forward", it doesn't matter who originally helped you on these forums but what does matter is regardless later when you are treated you owe it to yourself to make an effort to always advocate for affordable Hepatitis treatment for all and if you can spend even 5 minutes each week visiting this forum and posting a few replies to cheer up someone who might not be as happy as you and don't forget, you were once in their shoes.
I've ended up posting way more than I wanted but I have to say this has all been an emotional roller coaster for myself and my wife and I am forever thankful for having the support of this group, we're all going to beat this and be cured but lets not give up in helping others to be able to afford this treatment if they can't.
Thanks for listening and I'm sorry this went on longer than I thought but emotionally this all means alot to me.
In the words of "iplaycarvin" who started this thread
[quote]To all of you suffering, non-responders and multiple treatments with serious complications, you are TRUE HEROS and I have nothing but respect and admiration for your courage to continue this battle.
BEST WISHES AND GOOD LUCK TO ALL!!
"Sovaldi - Everybody deserves this treatment option and it should be made affordable for all!"
Sovaldi + Ribavirin Treatment began February 6th 2014 - 12 weeks of treatment. After 4 weeks treatment VL has dropped from 4.7 Million to *79*