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Health Committee considering breast cancer medicines

Media Release

Organisation: Health Committee

For release: 7 December 2018

Health Committee considering breast cancer medicines and PHARMAC funding

Parliament’s Health Committee is considering a petition asking for funding to be provided for two breast cancer medicines. On Tuesday afternoon, the committee heard submissions on the petition from two stage-four breast cancer sufferers, Terre Nicholson and Wiki Mulholland.

At Tuesday’s hearing, Ms Nicholson and Ms Mulholland, along with Ms Mulholland’s husband, Malcolm, gave a presentation to the committee on the petition. The petition requests that the House of Representatives urge the Minister of Health and PHARMAC to fund Kadcyla and Palbociclib for breast cancer sufferers. The petition also asks the House to note that 33,971 people have signed online petitions requesting this funding.

The submitters have also asked for a select committee inquiry into unfunded medicines and PHARMAC. The committee opened a briefing on PHARMAC funding and patient access to drugs.

This will allow the committee to gather information on the wider issue of drug funding, and decide on any further steps.

The Health Committee has resolved to hear evidence on the petition from the Ministry of Health with input from PHARMAC. When the committee decides it has gathered enough information to make a recommendation, it will report to the House of Representatives.

Louisa Wall MP, Chair of the Health Committee, said: “We are very grateful to Terre Nicholson and Wiki Mulholland for presenting their stories to us on Tuesday, and we are looking forward to receiving information from officials.”

Tuesday’s hearing was streamed on Facebook and the video is available to view on demand. You can also follow the committee’s Facebook page for updates. ENDS

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