Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today:
1. ISRAELI TANK SHELLS SLAM INTO UN SCHOOL IN GAZA, KILLING 15
The strike that hit the crowded compound sheltering the war displaced comes amid Israel's heaviest air and artillery assault in more than three weeks of conflict with Hamas.
2. ABOUT 150 MAY BE TRAPPED IN LANDSLIDE IN WESTERN INDIA
Federal rescue workers are hampered by continuing rains and poor roads leading to the village of Ambe in the Maharashtra state where the disaster buried about 40 houses.
3. SHELLS HIT APARTMENT BUILDINGS IN EASTERN UKRAINE
Officials in the city of Donetsk say 19 people are dead in fighting between the government forces and pro-Russian separatists.
4. EU, U.S. HIT RUSSIA WITH ECONOMIC PENALTIES
Stocks take a tumble in Moscow after coordinated sanctions are aimed at increasing pressure on Putin to end his support for separatists in eastern Ukraine.
5. HOUSE IS SET TO TAKE UP $17B VA OVERHAUL BILL
The measure is intended to help veterans avoid long waits for health care, hire more doctors and nurses to treat them, and make it easier to fire senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department.
6. AS WEALTHY CATALONIA EYES INDEPENDENCE, A NEEDY SPAIN HOLDS ON
The region's secession campaign promises profound consequences for the country as it emerges from its worst economic crisis in a generation, with the moneymaker as a major driver of growth.
7. IN STING, KIDS ARE FOUND WHO WERE NEVER REPORTED LOST
In a weeklong effort by the FBI to rescue child sex trafficking victims last month, 168 juveniles recovered, some as young as 11. Among them was a group that particularly troubles child welfare advocates: those whose disappearance was never made known to authorities.
8. WHAT TARNISHES POWERFUL PORTUGUESE FAMILY
The country's Espirito Santo family business survived wars, dictatorship, revolution and family feuds for almost 150 years. Now, it is being stripped of its wealth and influence amid accounting irregularities, huge unreported debts and a police investigation.
9. WHY NYC MULLS LAW FOR IMPERSONATORS
The city officials are turning up the heat on Times Square costumed characters in a bid to rein in a summertime spike in badly behaving characters, such as the Spider-Man accused of punching a police officer recently.
10. WHO IS STAYING IN THE BOOTH FOR THE LOS ANGELES DODGERS
Vin Scully, the 86-year-old Hall of Fame announcer will return for his record 66th season with the team in 2015.
DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) — Shells smashed into a residential neighborhood of Donetsk on Tuesday as Ukrainian forces intensified their campaign to encircle the rebel stronghold. The shelling killed at least two people, blew gaping holes in an apartment block and raised fears that the city is on the verge of severe bloodshed.
Fighting also raged elsewhere in Ukraine's troubled east, bringing the death toll to at least 24 civilians and 10 soldiers over the past day. And it prevented international investigators once again from visiting the site of the Malaysia Airlines jet shot down earlier this month.
The increased danger to civilians has brought sharp criticism from the United Nations and human rights groups. But each side blames the other for shelling residential areas.
The rebels insist the attacks are evidence of what they describe as the government's indiscriminate oppression of its own people. But Ukraine insists that it has banned the use of artillery in residential areas and in turn accuses separatists of targeting civilians in an effort to discredit the army.
Donetsk until recently had seen little fighting other than a rebel attempt in May to seize the city's airport. But Tuesday's barrage, along with last week's shelling of the city's main railroad station, has brought the war painfully close to the city of nearly 1 million. Ukrainian forces have made advances against rebels in nearby towns.
Fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia separatists also has been heavy around Luhansk, the second-largest city held by the rebels. Five people died when artillery fire hit a home for the elderly there on Monday, local authorities said.
"This is done by terrorists," said Andriy Lysenko, a spokesman for Ukraine's national security council, referring to the shelling of civilians. "Under instructions from the president, in residential areas and communities where we have Ukrainian citizens, we do not fire artillery or perform airstrikes."
But rebels accuse the government of indiscriminately using heavy artillery against residential neighborhoods in areas under their control.
The Donetsk shelling sent about 50 frightened residents to huddle for safety in an underground parking lot, including Lubov Skorikh who was distraught at discovering that her husband Vladimir had been killed.
"I ran out. ... An old woman told me, 'Look, there is a man lying there.' I didn't even think that could be my husband. But then I saw the shoes; they were his shoes," she said, breaking down in tears. "Do you understand? His shoes! My God, I lived with him for 45 years; he was such a good person."
On Tuesday, the national rail system said it would offer free transport to people leaving the areas engulfed in fighting. But Lysenko, the security council spokesman, said rebels had blocked the railroad out of Luhansk, barring residents from leaving the city.
"If we were earlier able to organize additional trains to and from Luhansk, to Kiev, now they have completely blocked the railway line," Lysenko said.
Lysenko also accused separatist fighters of using children as human shields and stopping cars from leaving Luhansk. It was not immediately possible to confirm those claims.
In Horlivka, a city besieged by government troops, the mayor's office reported Tuesday that 17 people, including three children, were killed as a result of shelling.
The mayor's office said there has been major damage to many homes and government offices in the center of the city. It also said the top floor of a school was destroyed as a result of a direct hit from a shell.
A U.N. monitoring mission in Ukraine says there has been an alarming buildup of heavy weaponry in civilian areas of Donetsk and Luhansk — including artillery, tanks, rockets and missiles that are being used to inflict increasing casualties and damage to civilian infrastructure.
The U.N. said in a report this week that use of such weaponry could amount to a violation of international humanitarian law.
"There is an increase in the use of heavy weaponry in areas that are basically surrounded by public buildings," said Gianni Magazzeni, head of the U.N. office's branch that oversees Ukraine. "All international law needs to be applied and fully respected."
The U.N. report acknowledged the government's promise not to bombard the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk. However, it said that "people trapped in areas controlled by the armed groups continue to be killed as the heavy shelling continues from both sides. Questions arise about the conformity of these attacks with the rules governing the conduct of hostilities."
The U.N. called for a "full and impartial investigation" of all incidents where civilians have been killed.
New York-based Human Rights Watch has been more categorical in its accusations against the government and last week produced what it said was evidence the army had fired on houses in the suburbs of Donetsk.
The overall death toll has been steadily rising. The U.N. has said that at least 1,129 people were killed between mid-April, when fighting began, and July 26.
Heavy fighting has also spread to other areas in the region, including towns not far from the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. Security officials claimed another advance Tuesday with the retaking of Debaltseve, a town east of Horlivka that lies at the intersection of two vital highways.
Lysenko said Tuesday that 10 soldiers were killed and another 55 wounded in fighting over the past day.
A team of Dutch and Australian police officers and forensic experts is currently stationed in Donetsk in the hope of traveling to the fields where the Boeing 777 came down.
For the third day running, the delegation has been forced to cancel plans to travel to the area of the wreckage.
Leonard reported from Kiev, Ukraine. Associated Press writer Jim Heintz in Moscow contributed.
It's no surprise Noa Epstein worries about the safety of her husband, a reservist in the Israeli army called to duty as war smolders in the Gaza Strip. But, still carrying memories of a transformative summer camp experience nearly two decades ago, she knows there is another side to the conflict, and she is filled with concern for the Palestinians too.
As rockets fly, troops battle and casualties mount in Gaza, teens from both sides of the border are heading to Otisfield, Maine, for Seeds of Peace, a camp now in its 22nd year of fostering dialogue among its participants. Even years later, campers like Epstein say they feel the impact of their experience gently nudging them to consider their words, to have compassion and always, always to aim for peace.
"I learned to empathize with the other side," said Epstein, 32, of Jerusalem. "I have friends who live in these places, in the West Bank and Gaza, that I care about, just as I care about Israeli soldiers."
Though Mideast peace may seem even farther from reality than when Seeds of Peace began in 1993, its ardent supporters argue its impact is still great. The lakeside camp was built on the notion that person-to-person contact would cement relationships, which would in turn slowly lead to broader societal change. Peace has been elusive, but former campers have taken on a bevy of projects aimed at making it a reality.
Epstein made friends with Palestinians for the first time at the camp. Palestinians and Israelis came together to celebrate her birthdays. She crossed the border to do presentations in schools and even slept over at a friend's house in Nablus, in the West Bank. She became fluent in Arabic and runs an organization that aims to bring Israeli and Palestinian students together.
"Beyond the cliche of finding the human face in the enemy, I really made friends who I trust," she said.
Siwar Mansour, a 19-year-old Palestinian living in Tira, Israel, who attended Seeds of Peace five years ago, said it taught her to truly listen to others, to consider why they've taken a position, and to think before she responds. She witnesses the hatred constantly. "They should all die," she once heard someone say of Palestinians. "Who cares about them?" she heard another time. She bites her tongue at the office, on the bus and in the mall, just as she does when the vitriol is unleashed on Facebook, taking a deep breath and mustering something surprising: hope.
"You find yourself believing that peace could actually happen," she said of the camp.
After her camp experience, Mansour enrolled in a high school where she was the only Arab, got involved with two musical groups that aim for reconciliation, and, determined to make the plight for peace a career, is applying to university programs in international relations.
Eldad Levy, 31, of Haifa, Israel, arrived at camp in 1998 filled with anger over bombings on buses and elsewhere, and having never had a Palestinian friend. At first, he huddled mostly with other Israeli Jews and even questioned the motives of Palestinians who fouled him in basketball.
Slowly, the perspectives driven by nationalism, ethnicity and religion faded, Levy said, as people of all backgrounds became friends. When it was over, he remembers the heartbreak of saying goodbye. Not long after, when the outbreak of violence known as the Second Intifada came, he received a call from a girl he'd befriended from Gaza.
"I'm so sorry about this," he remembered her saying. "I'm so sorry you have to go through this."
Her compassion was startling to him. He stayed involved in Seeds of Peace and, for a time, worked for the program. Today, about half of his social network stems from it. Palestinians and Israelis alike came to his wedding and have come to love his daughter.
Levy continues to have the difficult discussions that began 16 years ago, sometimes angering those he's close to when he questions Israeli leadership or expresses sorrow for Palestinian hardships.
Mahmoud Jabari, 23, arrived at camp in 2007, telling of the sight of tanks in the street and the sound of neighborhoods being shelled at night; of his childhood game of running from Israeli soldiers; of worrying his parents wouldn't arrive home safely each day. He had no interest in hearing of Israel's right to exist; he claimed all of Palestine.
For him, Israelis fell into two categories, soldiers and settlers. But sharing a cabin with them, having them listen to his story, changed him.
"I was sitting in front of someone who cared," said Jabari, who later enrolled at Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. "And that was astonishing."
The hardest part, Jabari said, was leaving the idyllic camp setting, where open-mindedness and respect reigned and anything seemed possible.
"You go back to a different reality," he said. "Checkpoints, separation walls, military, settlements, restrictions of movement — and you become stuck between too many questions that sometimes you're unable to answer."
Tomer Perry, 31, of Jerusalem, said the deteriorating political climate has made dialogue far more difficult for campers today than when he attended in 1996 .
"The friendship you create in camp is really strained by the realities faced at home," he said. "And then they start to think of this whole thing as an illusion."
When a wave of violence like the Gaza war hits, it is particularly difficult, but not unfamiliar to the Seeds alumni. In the tragedy most closely linked with the organization, former camper Asel Asleh, a 17-year-old Israeli Arab, was shot to death by Israeli police during stone-throwing clashes in his village in 2000. He was buried in a forest green T-shirt printed with the Seeds of Peace logo — three children and an olive branch.
Amer Kamal slept in the cabin next to Asleh's at in 1997. He's still haunted by his friend's death. Today, Kamal is 31 and living in Minneapolis. Watching the news of Gaza, he gets angry and sad.
"Sometimes you fall into that trap. That's when you have to remind yourself what you believe," he said. "Having friends from the other side helps in remembering."
NEW YORK (AP) — More travelers are flying than ever before, creating a daunting challenge for airlines: keep passengers safe in an ever more crowded airspace.
Each day, 8.3 million people around the globe — roughly the population of New York City — step aboard an airplane. They almost always land safely.
Some flights, however, are safer than others.
The accident rate in Africa, for instance, is nearly five times that of the worldwide average, according to the International Civil Aviation Organization, part of the United Nations. Such trouble spots also happen to be where air travel is growing the fastest, putting the number of fliers on course to double within the next 15 years.
"In some areas of the world, there's going to be a learning curve," says Patrick Smith, a commercial airline pilot for 24 years and author of "Cockpit Confidential." But that doesn't necessarily mean that the skies are going to become more dangerous. "We've already doubled the volume of airplanes and passengers and what's happened is we've gotten safer."
To meet the influx of passengers, airlines will need to hire and train enough qualified pilots and mechanics. Governments will have to develop and enforce safety regulations. New runways with proper navigation aids will have to be constructed.
Industry experts acknowledge the difficulties, but note that aviation has gone through major growth spurts before and still managed to improve safety along the way.
Last year, 3.1 billion passengers flew, twice the total in 1999. Yet, the chances of dying in a plane crash were much lower.
Since 2000, there were less than three fatalities per 10 million passengers, according to an Associated Press analysis of crash data provided by aviation consultancy Ascend. In the 1990s, there were nearly eight; during the 1980s there were 11; and the 1970s had 26 deaths per 10 million passengers.
The last two weeks have been bad for aviation with the shooting down of a Malaysia Airlines flight followed by separate crashes in Taiwan and Mali. But the rare trio of tragedies represents just a fraction of the 93,500 daily airline flights worldwide.
"Aviation safety is continuing to get better. A sudden spate of accidents doesn't mean that the industry has suddenly become less safe," says Paul Hayes, director of air safety for Ascend.
As global incomes rise, people in Southeast Asia, Africa, Latin America, India and China want to travel more. Airplane manufacturer Airbus says that while U.S. traffic is growing 2.4 percent a year, emerging countries are seeing 13.2 percent annual growth.
In those countries, flying is often the only option. Cities are remote. Adequate highways or railroads don't always exist. New airlines have popped up, offering affordable flights to satisfy this growing thirst for travel.
These carriers — many unheard of outside their region — are adding new jets at a breakneck pace. In the next six years alone, Indonesia's Lion Air will get 265 new planes and India's IndiGo will receive 125, according to Bank of America.
"If an airline rapidly expands," Hayes says, the challenge of adding new staff and getting them to work together properly "can increase risk."
Plane manufacturer Boeing estimates that within 20 years, the industry will need 498,000 new commercial airline pilots and 556,000 new maintenance technicians. Finding enough skilled workers to meet that demand isn't going to be easy.
Sherry Carbary, vice president of Boeing Flight Services, says there is an "urgent demand for competent aviation personnel."
"This is a global issue, requiring industry-wide collaboration and innovative solutions," she says.
Lee Moak, president of the Air Line Pilots Association, the largest U.S. pilots' union, adds that strong oversight by governments and trade groups is needed to ensure proper training.
"If you don't have a safe operation, then you're not going to have customers," Moak says.
Countries must also invest in the right infrastructure. There needs to be proper radar coverage, runway landing lights and beacons and skilled airport fire and rescue teams, says Todd Curtis, director of the Airsafe.com Foundation. Developing regions, he adds, also currently don't have enough airports that planes can divert to in case of an emergency.
And when there is a crash with survivors, having hospitals nearby with advanced trauma centers helps to lower the number of fatalities. Nearly a third of all accidents since 1959 where the plane was destroyed still didn't have any deaths, according to Boeing.
Technological improvements are also helping to lower the accident rate. Cockpits now come with systems that automatically warn if a jet is too low, about to hit a mountain or another plane. Others detect sudden wind gusts that could make a landing unsafe.
The next generation of technology promises to help prevent even more accidents. Honeywell Aerospace launched a new system 18 months ago that gives pilots better awareness about severe turbulence, hail and lightning. The company is also developing a system to improve pilots' vision in stormy weather: an infrared camera will let them see runways through thick clouds earlier than the naked eye would.
"At the end of the day, we're a safety net. We're there to help the flight crew," says Ratan Khatwa, senior chief engineer for human factors at Honeywell.
The catch: While these advances would help a generation of new pilots fly more safely, not all airlines are willing to pay for the upgrades.
"The industry is very opposed, for cost reasons, to retrofits," says James E. Hall, former chairman of the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board. "You have a situation of the haves and the have-nots."
WASHINGTON (AP) — Racing to adjourn for the summer, the Senate scheduled major votes Tuesday on proposals to keep federal highway funds flowing across the nation — billions of dollars to avert layoffs for construction workers and shutdowns of road and bridge projects just before the November elections.
A smooth trip through the Senate was anything but guaranteed, and votes were expected to last into the night.
The House passed a $10.8 billion bill last week that would pay for highway and transit aid to states through the end of May 2015 at current spending levels, and the Senate was taking up that legislation. But some senators, complaining that the House version depended on budgetary gimmicks and wanting to force action on a longer-term solution, were expected to offer amendments. And if any amendments passed, that would set up a showdown between the House and Senate on how to resolve the differences.
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, declared his chamber would not accept any changes in the way transportation programs are paid for in its bill.
"I just want to make clear, if the Senate sends a highway bill over here with those provisions, we're going to strip it out and put the House-passed provisions back in and send it back to the Senate," he said.
By Aug. 1 — this Friday — the federal Highway Trust Fund will no longer have enough money to cover promised aid to states, the Transportation Department says, and the government will begin to stretch out payments. Congress has kept the trust fund teetering on the edge of bankruptcy since 2008 through a series of temporary fixes because lawmakers have been unable to find a politically acceptable, long-term funding plan. States have been warned to expect an average reduction of 28 percent in aid payments.
Without action from Congress, the balance in the fund is expected to drop to zero by late August or early September. And, separately, the government's authority to spend money on transportation programs expires on Oct. 1. Some states already have cut back on construction projects because of uncertainty over federal funding, and President Barack Obama and state and local officials have complained that the uncertainty over funding is costing jobs.
Federal aid pays for about 52 percent of the cost of road and bridge capital projects undertaken every year, said Dave Bauer, a lobbyist for the American Road and Transportation Builders Association.
"So if you have 52 percent of your market that on an almost annual or every-other-year basis is subject to Congress not shutting everything down when there isn't a great track record on doing that, would you be making long-term investments and hiring people?" he said.
An amendment sponsored by Democratic Sens. Tom Carper of Delaware and Barbara Boxer of California and GOP Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee would provide only $8.1 billion, just enough to keep highway programs going through Dec. 19. They say their aim is to force Congress to come up with a long-term solution on how to pay for transportation programs after the election when partisan fervor supposedly will have cooled.
"I remain deeply concerned that if we kick this can into next year that the next Congress — like so many Congresses before it — will be unable to summon the courage necessary to write a long-term plan for our nation's infrastructure," Carper said.
The trust fund is in its current straits because the federal 18.4-cent-a-gallon gas tax and the 24.4-cent-a-gallon diesel tax— the fund's chief source of revenue — haven't been increased in more than 20 years, while the cost of maintaining and expanding the nation's aging infrastructure has gone up. The fuel-efficiency of cars and trucks is also increasing while people are driving less per capita.
One solution would be to raise fuel taxes, but lawmakers are reluctant to do that in an election year — especially Republicans for whom a vote in favor of any tax increase could trigger a backlash from their party's base.
"I haven't heard of a single person that doesn't realize this issue has got to be dealt with, and the way we've been dealing with it is totally irresponsible," said Corker, who has bucked his party by introducing a bill to raise the gas tax.
Under an agreement worked out between Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., any amendments require 60 votes for passage — a high hurdle.
Another amendment would replace the House bill with a nearly identical bill approved by the Senate Finance Committee. The key difference is the Finance Committee bill relies less on money raised by allowing companies to defer funding pension plans and more on steps to make sure certain tax credits are used only by people who qualify for them. Funding pensions plans normally results in a tax savings for companies, and deferring those payments means they will pay more in taxes and increase federal revenue.
Some lawmakers have complained such "pension smoothing" will cost the government money in the long and undermine the financial stability of pension funds.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A $1,000-per-pill drug that insurers are reluctant to pay for has quickly become the treatment of choice for a liver-wasting viral disease that affects more than 3 million Americans.
In less than six months, prescriptions for Sovaldi have eclipsed all other hepatitis C pills combined, according to new data from IMS Health. The prospect of a real cure, with fewer nasty side effects, is enticing thousands of patients to get treated for the first time.
But clinical and commercial successes have triggered scrutiny for the drug's manufacturer, California-based Gilead Sciences Inc., which just reported second-quarter profits of $3.66 billion, a net margin of 56 percent.
Two senior senators are raising questions about documents that suggest the initial developers of Sovaldi considered pricing treatment at less than half as much. The health insurance industry is publicly scolding Gilead, and state Medicaid programs are pushing back.
The repercussions for patients could go beyond one drug and one disease.
A number of promising cancer medications near approval could provide the next storm over costs. The average cost of brand-name cancer drugs has doubled in a decade, to about $10,000 a month.
"You can't put too fine a point on the sort of moral dilemma that we have here," said Michael Kleinrock, director of the IMS Institute, which studies prescription drug trends. "This is something that the research-based pharmaceutical industry reaches for all the time: a cure. But when they achieve one, can we afford it?"
New data from IMS Health, the Connecticut parent company of the institute, illustrate Sovaldi's impact since its debut December:
—The total number of pharmacy prescriptions for all hepatitis C pills has soared, highlighting patient demand for a cure. In May, more than 48,000 prescriptions were filled for four such medications, with Sovaldi accounting for three-fourths of the total. By comparison, prescriptions for May 2013 totaled about 6,200. That was before Sovaldi became available.
—In Sovaldi's first 30 weeks on the market, 62,000 new patients tried the drug, nearly three times as many as had tried an earlier medication that showed initial promise. That makes Sovaldi the most successful launch for any hepatitis C drug. And Gilead expects to have a successor soon that will make treatment easier to tolerate, because it won't require patients to take additional medications with strong side effects.
—The weekly number of new patients going on Sovaldi has been gradually slowing, from more than 2,900 in February and March to about 1,600-1,800 in late June and early July. That could indicate that pent-up initial demand is giving way to steadier levels, or it could mean that insurers are limiting access to protect their budgets.
Hepatitis C surpassed AIDS as a cause of death in the U.S. in 2007, claiming an estimated 15,000 lives that year. The illness is complex, with distinct virus types requiring different treatments. While it advances gradually, it can ultimately destroy the liver, and transplants average $577,000.
The cost of a 12-week regimen of Sovaldi along with two companion medications that patients must also take is around $100,000. Competing regimens with other hepatitis C drugs cost in the mid- to high five figures, and some are far less effective and harder to tolerate.
Hepatitis C is a public health concern, since the disease can be transmitted by contact with infected blood, by drug users sharing needles and sometimes through sexual activity. Many people are unaware that they carry the virus. Health officials advise all baby boomers to get tested.
At Mount Sinai Health System's liver clinic in New York City, patient advocate Angela Woody said Sovaldi has brightened the outlook for patients. But getting insurance approval can require dogged effort.
"We haven't had anyone who has not been given the medication," Woody said. "We have had to jump through a great deal of hoops. We have two patients who applied in January and did not actually go on the medication until April."
Sovaldi's implications for Medicare and Medicaid costs have prompted rare bipartisan cooperation in Congress on a health care issue.
Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, are asking Gilead for a detailed explanation of its pricing. Wyden chairs the Finance Committee, which oversees health insurance programs, and Grassley is a veteran of drug safety investigations.
The senators say their staffs unearthed information from public documents that calls into question Gilead's $84,000 price for a full course of Sovaldi treatment, for the most common type of hepatitis C.
In 2011 filings with federal market regulators, the company that originally developed Sovaldi estimated a price of $36,000. That number was developed during Gilead's negotiations to buy Pharmasset, the original developer.
Gilead spokeswoman Amy Flood said the company has no comment.
But Gilead vice president Gregg Alton recently addressed the issue at a public forum sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank.
"To suggest that a cure for a disease like hepatitis C should be priced at $36,000 ... would put a huge disincentive on investing in cures for our industry," he said.
Gilead took on most of the challenge — and risk — of getting government approval for Sovaldi, Alton added.
He suggested another standard for measuring the value of Sovaldi, something called "cost-per-cure." As Alton explained it, that makes Sovaldi look like a bargain.
The older hepatitis C treatment regimens take longer and are less effective, and Alton estimated their cost-per-cure at somewhere between $150,000 and $200,000. Included are companion drugs that patients must also take.
"With a Sovaldi regimen we're actually getting down to $115,000 per cure," said Alton. "So it is actually, on a per-cure basis, much less costly."