NHS England announce that prostate cancer drug cabazitaxel will no longer be available on the Cancer Drugs Fund – another casualty of a failing system.
NHS England announced today that cabazitaxel will no longer be available to new patients in England via the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF). The decision will come into effect on 12 March 2015. This follows an announcement last month that they’d be reassessing whether some of the drugs on the CDF, including cabazitaxel, should still be available once cost was taken into account, as well as clinical effectiveness.
The decision came out late this afternoon, and at first glance it looks like NHS England thought that the evidence Sanofi (the manufacturer) gave them about the clinical benefits of cabazitaxel (in other words, how much men would benefit from this treatment) wasn’t good enough to justify its price tag.
It’s important for anyone already receiving cabazitaxel to know that there’s no need to worry. You will be able to continue your treatment for as long as your doctor thinks you need it.
Owen Sharp, Chief Executive of Prostate Cancer UK responded to this announcement: “Todays announcement is just another symptom of a drug appraisal system in meltdown. It underlines yet again the critical need for a more effective overall solution to the commissioning of cancer drugs across the whole of the UK, with the full cooperation from the pharmaceutical industry.
“Those at the very top of the Department of Health have pledged to make reform to the commissioning of cancer drugs a priority, but we are yet to see action. We are determined to hold those responsible to account on this pledge. We won’t stop until we get the system that is right for cancer patients now and in the future. The time is now.”
If you have any concerns about cabazitaxel or prostate cancer, you can contact our specialist nurses
Owen Sharp, our Chief Executive, blogs on the recent headlines regarding the Cancer Drugs Fund and prostate cancer drug Jevtana.