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More women taking up 12 month Herceptin course

Hon Tony Ryall
Minister of Health

23 October 2009 Media Statement
More women taking up 12 month Herceptin course

"174 New Zealand women are now getting the 12 month course of Herceptin for treatment of Her-2 breast cancer," Health Minister Tony Ryall has announced.

"National started funding 12 months of Herceptin from the first day it came into office."

The Minister says 174 women with breast cancer were on a twelve months Herceptin course as at the end of August 2009.

Women who began treatment as private patients before the Government was sworn in have also been reimbursed their costs from the time the current Government was sworn in.

The 12 month course is being funded from the extra $40 million the Government is spending on pharmaceuticals this year.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says the Government's 100 day action plan included making publicly funded Herceptin available for 12 months, as well as for nine weeks.

Mr Ryall acknowledged the assistance of former breast physician, Dr Jackie Blue MP in developing this policy.

ENDS

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