SMC rejects two cystic fibrosis drugs

This is a summary of an article by BBC News.

The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has rejected two cystic fibrosis (CF) medicines, Orkambi (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) and Symkevi (tezacaftor/ivacaftor), manufactured by Vertex Pharmaceuticals, citing that the long-term health benefits of the two drugs do not outweigh their costs.

These medicines help improve lung function and respiratory symptoms in patients with cystic fibrosis, who carry the F508del genetic mutation, and costs about €107,700 (£100,000) per year per patient. Orkambi (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) is for use in patients from two-year-olds to adults and Symkevi (tezacaftor/ivacaftor) is for use in patients from twelve-year-olds to adults.

Campaigners are disappointed about the decision. The Scottish government is working 'as a matter of urgency' with Vertex to provide broad access to eligible patients. Currently, some Scottish patients have access to Orkambi (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) and Symkevi (tezacaftor/ivacaftor) through the Peer Approved Clinical System Tier 2 (PACS Tier 2).

BBC News. Cystic fibrosis drugs rejected for use by NHS in Scotland. 12/08/2019.

*Click here to read more about cystic fibrosis and the approval of Orkambi (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) elsewhere (posted 03/12/2018).

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