Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Cancer drugs stopped mid-treatment

Paul Hutchison - National Party Health Spokesman

10 March 2005

Cancer drugs stopped mid-treatment

The Minister of Health must stop the callous treatment of cancer patients having their drugs switched mid-therapy because of Government policy, says National’s Health spokesman, Paul Hutchison.

Frances Borich is one of up to 25 patients on a drug trial for adjuvent metastatic cancer at Auckland Hospital.

On February 9, without explanation or informed consent, she was told that the drug Zometa, which was helping her fight cancer, would be stopped.

Dr Hutchison says when she attended the hospital a week later, she was told that because the replacement drug took five times longer to infuse, taking up nursing time and hospital space, she was unlikely to get another appointment for more than 18 weeks.

“I challenge the Health Minister Annette King to stop Pharmac making decisions based on the cost of the cheaper drug. In this case they have not factored in the added nursing costs to the hospital or the despair and anguish to cancer patients.

“Only a year ago, patients dying of cancer had their choice of pain relief stopped by the same policies and it was only after huge pressure that changes occurred.

“Labour’s cancer initiative of $5.3 million for treatment services is totally inadequate to achieve optimal treatment for cancer sufferers in New Zealand.

“Labour is simply ignoring a cancer crisis. There is an urgent need for an independent inquiry into cancer services, as medical specialists like Professor Ron Jones have frequently pointed out,” says Dr Hutchison.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>

 

BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>

ALSO:

Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>

ALSO:

State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages