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Breast Cancer Foundation's Reaction To Latest Pharmac Proposal

Ah-Leen Rayner, chief executive of Breast Cancer Foundation NZ, said:

“This is good news for Kiwis with a certain type of incurable (advanced) breast cancer. Ribociclib is the same class of drug as palbociclib (Ibrance), which has been funded in NZ for the past three years. While it’s not reaching a new patient group, this provides an extra treatment option, which can be important when people experience different side effects on different drugs. This announcement might help people to stay on treatment for longer.

“Interestingly, a recent clinical trial showed that ribociclib might also prevent or delay recurrence of early hormone-positive breast cancer. So having access to this drug in New Zealand now might in future provide us with more effective treatment at an earlier stage.”

“However, while it’s always good to have another treatment option for this particular kind of breast cancer, there are still hundreds of Kiwis diagnosed each year who don’t have access to the effective, targeted treatments that are already available in other countries. Fundamentally, what’s needed to save and extend lives is a whole new approach to medicines funding so that breast cancer patients in NZ can get the modern treatments they desperately need.”

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