San Francisco, Cali., December 10, 2013 — The California Technology Assessment Forum (CTAF), a flagship initiative of the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), announced that it will hold a public meeting to assess the comparative effectiveness and value of new treatment options for people infected with Hepatitis C on March 10, 2014, in San Francisco, CA. CTAF’s public deliberation of the evidence will provide clarity and guidance to clinicians, insurers, and patients confronted with decisions on how best to treat Hepatitis C. The meeting is timely given the recent introduction of new drugs and drug combinations with the potential to cure most patients faster and with fewer side effects than older treatments.

“This is a complex clinical area involving multiple treatment options about which there are important concerns regarding comparative effectiveness and value,” stated Steven D. Pearson, MD, MSc, President of the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review. “In addition to a thorough review of the evidence, CTAF will work with patient groups and other decision makers during their deliberation to ensure the key considerations for patients, providers and policymakers are discussed and considered.”

An estimated three to four million Americans are infected with Hepatitis C, three to five times the number who have H.I.V. Most people who are infected do not know it, because it can take decades for the virus to damage the liver sufficiently to cause symptoms. Patients and their doctors face a treatment dilemma because not all patients infected with Hepatitis C will suffer serious liver damage and need medication; the effectiveness of the new drugs may vary depending on which strain of Hepatitis C the patient is infected with; and the new drugs can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

Meeting Details
Date: Monday, March 10, 2014
Time: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM PST
Location: San Francisco, CA (exact location TBD)

Members of the public wishing to attend the meeting must register by March 1, 2014 on The website also includes instructions for those wishing to submit written comments ahead of time, and those requesting the opportunity to make public comments at the meeting.

About CTAF
The California Technology Assessment Forum (CTAF), a flagship initiative of the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, is dedicated to providing credible, evidence-based information about new and emerging medical technologies and delivery system interventions. Lead funding is provided by Blue Shield of California Foundation. For more information about CTAF, please visit

About ICER
The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) is an independent non-profit healthcare research organization dedicated to improving the interpretation and application of evidence in the healthcare system.