A 61-year-old Australian man, Greg Jeffery was close to getting liver cirrhosis as a result of hepatitis C, four months ago and needed a drug called Sivoldi to reverse the life-threatening condition.
Greg, who is a historian, could not afford the pill as each one cost over 1,000 Australian dollars and the total treatment would have cost him a $100,000.
According to a Times of India report, a desperate Greg landed in Chennai three months ago and not only did he get the drug, but the entire treatment cost him $900.
Greg was cured in four weeks and has now set off a debate back home, if life-saving drugs should be priced so high. He is also helping other Australians with Hepatits C, source the drug from India.
The demand has been overwhelming for Greg since, as he provided the medication to over a hundred Australians in just a few months.
If you haven't got the money, for a lot of people it's a death sentence â€” you die," Jeffery told ABC. " I was right on the edge of cirrhosis of the liver, once you get cirrhosis you then open up to tumours and cancer."
Greg now gets around 50 e-mails a day from people asking him to source the medicine for their family and friends and also gets contacted by liver clinics in Sydney, who are still trying to get cheaper medication. "Even the big hospitals can't afford to buy it and they're seeing their patients dying," he adds.
He now runs a blog and Facebook group called Hepatitis C Treatment without Borders.
The story could also be an eye opener for the west, which criticizes India's patent regime for not honouring intellectual property rights in medicine, the TOI report adds.