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PHARMAC plan to secure haemophilia treatment

Media Release
Tick for PHARMAC plan to secure haemophilia treatment

PHARMAC has been given the thumbs up for securing long-term supply of products used in the treatment of haemophilia.

PHARMAC has approved national agreements to secure the supply of Recombinant Factor VIII for at least the next three years. As well as ensuring supply, the agreements are forecast to save DHBs $31 million over the next five years.

Recombinant Factor VIII provides a life-saving clotting factor for around 200 New Zealanders who receive regular treatment.

The Haemophilia Foundation of New Zealand (HFNZ) has welcomed the move saying the programme should enable continuous supply while making significant cost savings.

HFNZ President Dave McCone says he is pleased that PHARMAC’s decision offers a secure supply which is essential, as people with haemophilia are utterly dependent on regular and safe treatment.

He says HFNZ is happy that PHARMAC listened to concerns raised over sole supply of these products, and will implement a solution that ticks all the right boxes: product safety, surety of supply and cost-efficiency.

Chair of the Haemophilia Foundation’s Medical Advisory Committee, Dr Paul Harper, says the decision is welcomed by clinicians treating haemophilia.

“Clinicians treating haemophilia in New Zealand welcome PHARMAC’s decision to list all three recombinant factor VIII products on the Pharmaceutical Schedule,” Dr Harper says.

“This should ensure security of supply even in the event of international shortage and is beneficial to people with haemophilia as they will not be forced to change product.”

“PHARMAC’s decision involved close consultation with clinicians and is seen as a good balance between ensuring supply and obtaining a competitive price and should benefit both the health sector and people with haemophilia.”

PHARMAC Chief Executive Wayne McNee says patients will be able to continue their treatment uninterrupted as a result of this decision.

“Patients will not notice any change from moving to national contracts and their health needs will still be met,” says Wayne McNee.

“Securing the ongoing supply of Recombinant Factor VIII not only guarantees supply of an essential medical product, it also provides considerable financial savings to DHBs.”

The agreements with Bayer New Zealand, Baxter Healthcare and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals will ensure all products remain available nationally until at least June 2008.

ENDS

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