News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


PHARMAC declines eculizumab funding proposal due to price

Citing unreasonable price, PHARMAC declines eculizumab funding proposal

An unreasonably high price means PHARMAC has decided not to approve funding for eculizumab, a treatment for the rare blood disorder paroxysmal nocturnal haemoglobinuria (PNH).

Chief Executive Steffan Crausaz says the price being asked by Alexion is $670,000 per patient per year, making it one of the most expensive drugs PHARMAC has ever assessed.

“It’s one of the most expensive medicines we’ve evaluated; but it’s not the most effective and that’s the core of the problem,” says Steffan Crausaz.

“The price Alexion is offering is higher than is charged overseas, and higher than the cost charged by competitors for similar drugs for other rare conditions, one of which we have just funded for another rare blood disorder.”

“We would like nothing better than to make eculizumab available for New Zealanders with PNH. If Alexion wants to make the price more reasonable, our door is open to them.”

Steffan Crausaz says PHARMAC does not think it is reasonable for New Zealand to be asked to pay more than the price charged in the UK or Canada, even with a discount.

PHARMAC also sees similar products priced much more reasonably. An example is eltrombopag, a new medicine that treats another rare blood disorder, which costs $36,000 per patient per year. Eltrombopag will be one of the most expensive per-patient medicines funded by PHARMAC, yet is about a 20th of the price of eculizumab on a per-patient basis.

Steffan Crausaz says eculizumab could benefit up to 20 people in New Zealand, at a cost of approximately $10 million per year. If funding was committed to the drug, it would mean potentially tens of thousands of New Zealanders missing out on new medicines and this would be unfair.

“Eculizumab has benefits for patients, and for that reason we would love to be able to fund it. But the reality is the price being asked by Alexion puts funding far out of our reach. We also need to bear in mind the needs of other patients, and how funding eculizumab at this price would curb our ability to fund other medicines.”

The decision doesn’t mean the door is forever closed to eculizumab funding.

“We are hoping to get around the negotiating table with Alexion, that they can come to us with a reasonable price, just as other companies do, and we can get on with making this drug available for New Zealanders with PNH.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

With Hunters & Collectors: The Rolling Stones Announce New Auckland Date

It’s the news New Zealand has been waiting for. The Rolling Stones today confirmed the rescheduled dates and venues for both the Australian and New Zealand legs of their highly anticipated ’14 On Fire’ tour. Now, Frontier Touring is also delighted ... More>>

ALSO:

Flying Things: Conchords, Pretties Help BATS Fly Home

The launch of BATS theatre’s fundraising campaign has taken off – with a bit of help from their friends. And with friends like theirs… An event last night hosted by Te Radar at Wellington’s latest waterfront venue, Shed 6, featured Fly My Pretties and, in a dream-come-true scenario, Flight of the Conchords. More>>

ALSO:

Environment: Zoo’s Own Wētā Workshop Produces Rare Giants For Release

Following unprecedented breeding and rearing success, Auckland Zoo is today releasing 150 of New Zealand’s largest giant wētā, the wētā punga, onto pest-free Motuora Island in the Hauraki Gulf. A further 150 will be released onto Tiritiri Matangi next month. More>>

Girls On Film: Divergent Hits The Big Screen

n January, Catching Fire (the second film in the Hunger Games series) not only became the biggest US box office success of 2013 : it also became the first film starring a female actor (ie. Jennifer Lawrence) to top the annual domestic earnings chart since The Exorcist, 40 years ago. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: No Travel Sanctions For Russian Billionaire’s Superyacht

On the same day that New Zealand announced travel sanctions against selected Russians, a Russian billionaire’s superyacht berthed in Wellington Harbour. More>>

ALSO:

Mental Health: UC Researchers Believe Robots Can Persuade People To Conform

A team of University of Canterbury (UC) researchers and scientists believe robots can persuade people to conform through group pressure... ``Our results showed that robots can induce conformity but to a significantly lesser degree than humans." More>>

NZ On Air: Local Content Holds Steady At 32% Of Television Schedules

Since 1989 NZ On Air has measured local free-to-air television content. The report compares the schedules of the six national free-to-air channels, to observe trends and changes in the local content landscape. More>>

Arts Fest: 2014 New Zealand Festival A Spectacular Celebration

The New Zealand Festival welcomed the world to Wellington over 24 days (21 Feb – 16 Mar) of arts events across the city. “[current figures show] slight increase on the 110,000 tickets issued in 2012. It’s a great result.” More>>

Opera: Happy 70th Birthday Dame Kiri Te Kanawa

Our first lady of song who “feels more like at 15 year old” will celebrate her significant birthday on stage at Covent Garden tomorrow night (Friday morning NZT), performing in the Royal Opera House’s production of La fille du régiment (The Daughter of the Regiment) as La Duchess de Crackentorp. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news