Breast cancer drug ruling

Breast cancer charities have expressed their "utter disappointment" after the health regulator the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence said a new drug to treat breast cancer was ''not value for money''.

Charity hopes breast cancer drug ruling 'just a delay'

Charity Breast Cancer Campaign said it hopes the health regulator's decision on a new breast cancer drug is "just a delay rather than the end of the line".

Baroness Delyth Morgan, the charity's chief executive, said:

Everolimus offered hope to women with advanced breast cancer, whose treatment options are currently limited.

The rejection of the drug will be hugely disappointing for these women, especially as it had appeared to show early promising results.

We hope that this is just a delay rather than the end of the line for everolimus as further data on the effectiveness of this treatment is expected in the future.

Regulator deems breast cancer drug 'not cost-effective'

Health regulator the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has decided a new drug to treat breast cancer "is not a cost-effective treatment option for the NHS".

Nice's chief executive Sir Andrew Dillon said: "We are committed to making sure the NHS provides the treatments that can make the greatest difference to people's lives.

Generic stock picture of a mammogram.
Nice concluded everolimus 'is not a cost-effective treatment option for the NHS'. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Archive/Press Association Images

"This means weighing up how well a treatment works and comparing it to similar treatments in the NHS, while also taking into account any associated side effects and the cost that the health service is being asked to pay.

"While the evidence presented ... suggested that everolimus with exemestane could delay the growth and spread of breast cancer by four to five months, the evidence did not allow the committee to establish how long everolimus could actually extend a person's life for, compared with exemestane alone.

"Using the evidence available, the committee concluded that everolimus is not a cost-effective treatment option for the NHS".

Read: Charities condemn breast cancer drug ruling

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Charities condemn breast cancer drug ruling

Breast cancer charities expressed their "utter disappointment" in the health regulator's decision that a new drug to treat breast cancer is ''not value for money''.

The latest draft guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) recommended that the drug everolimus should not be available for widespread use on the NHS to treat a form of advanced breast cancer.

Nice recommended the drug everolimus should not be available for widespread use on the NHS.
Nice recommended the drug everolimus should not be available for widespread use on the NHS. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The Breakthrough Cancer charity said the announcement would come as a blow to the 1,500 women living in England and Wales who would be eligible for treatment.

The drug, also known as afinitor, is licensed for use in post-menopausal women with HER2 negative, hormone-receptor-positive advanced breast cancer if their disease has returned following a type of hormone therapy.

Manufacturers claim that the drug - if taken in combination with another medication - can extend the lives of patients for up to five months, however deemed that the drug was not "cost effective".