Tamiflu Cost Discouraged Patient From Getting Prescription Filled. She Died A Few Days Later.
This flu season has been vicious, leading to a high rate of deaths and hospitalizations. Second-grade teacher Heather Holland, of Texas, was one of those patients.
The Wall Street Journal:
The Deadly Flu No One Saw Coming
Heather Holland, a second-grade teacher, came home feeling a little sick on the last Monday in January. “It just sounded like her throat was scratchy,” said her husband, Frank Holland, a discomfort easy to ignore at first for a working mother. Over the next days, she made seemingly inconsequential decisions, including skipping a medicine because of the cost. Then her symptoms suddenly worsened, eventually sending Ms. Holland, 38 years old, to the hospital, on the brink of death. (McKay and Toy, 2/9)
Dallas Morning News:
A Texas Teacher Died After Delaying Flu Medicine She Thought Was Too Expensive. But How Much Does It Cost?
For Heather Holland, the week began with a scratchy throat and then brought a fever. By Wednesday, the Fort Worth-area teacher had been diagnosed with influenza B and given a prescription for oseltamivir phosphate, the generic name of the antiviral Tamiflu. At the pharmacy, Holland learned her bill after factoring insurance would be $116, according to The Wall Street Journal. She declined the drug, even though her family could afford it. (Chiquillo, 2/12)
Flu Season Could Cost Employers Billions Of Dollars
This flu season could cost at least $15.4 billion in lost productivity, according to employment consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. It predicts that more than 18 million Americans will miss at least four eight-hour shifts due to the flu virus. (Khrais, 2/12)
New Hampshire Public Radio:
Local Health Providers: Not Too Late To Get Your Flu Shot
At least 20 adults have died in New Hampshire because of complications related to the flu since September. And across the country, this year's flu season is shaping up to be one of the worst in years. (McDermott, 2/12)