Sheffield South East Labour MP, Clive Betts, has welcomed the final announcement by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) that the breakthrough prostate cancer drug – abiraterone – will now be made available on the NHS in England.
Abiraterone can extend the lives and improve the quality of life of men with advanced prostate cancer once all other treatment options have stopped working. Clive Betts supported the campaign to ensure this vital treatment is made available to men who needed it and has called on Sheffield PCT to ensure that the guidance is implemented well within the three month deadline.
Clive Betts said: “I welcome this important decision which can offer men with advanced prostate cancer precious extra quality time with loved ones at a stage when the only other treatment options are palliative.
“This is an issue that many constituents felt strongly about, and I am proud to have been part of this campaign to deliver this drug on the NHS for men with incurable prostate cancer.
“The next step is to ensure that men in Sheffield who need abiraterone can access it routinely on the NHS.”
Abiraterone was provisionally rejected by NICE in February 2012 on the basis of cost. Following a campaign led by Prostate Cancer UK – and supported by MPs, health professionals, men with prostate cancer and the media – NICE decided to review the evidence and re-evaluate the treatment as an end of life drug, for which it uses a higher price threshold. It also undertook successful negotiations with the manufacturer to reach an agreement on price.
Owen Sharp, Chief Executive of Prostate Cancer UK, said: “We are delighted that NICE’s decision to approve abiraterone for routine use on the NHS in England and Wales has been confirmed and that final guidance has now been published.
We are hugely thankful to Clive Betts MP for his support in this crucially important campaign.”Other news from Sheffield Labour