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Reaction: Breast cancer drug "too expensive for NHS"

It has been announced that a new cancer drug, which was pioneered at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle, will not be made available across England.

Trials found that the drug, called Kadcycla could extend the lives of some breast cancer patients by around six months.

The decision was made by the NHS's drugs advisory body NICE. They say the treatment is too expensive.

But Roche, the company that makes Kadcycla, insist it is affordable.

Here is the reaction from Sir Andrew Dillon, the Chief Executive of NICE and Jennifer Cozzone from the drug's manufacturers, Roche:

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Breast cancer drug decision 'an injustice'

The manufacturer of a breast cancer drug which has been deemed "too expensive" to be offered by the NHS has hit back at the decision.

Dr Jayson Dallas, general manager of Roche Products Limited, declared it "an incredible injustice."

Despite Roche offering a significant discount, we are once again disappointed that Nice has not shown any flexibility on access to Kadcyla.

Refusing patients access to this drug is an incredible injustice and tantamount to turning the clock back in cancer research and development. We plan to appeal this decision.

– Dr Jayson Dallas

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Breast cancer drug manufacturer 'could have done more'

The manufacturer of a breast cancer drug that offers a last hope to patients could have been "more flexible" to help make the drug affordable for the NHS, a health service boss said.

Sir Andrew Dillon, chief executive of the NHS financial watchdog Nice, which has ruled Kadcyla is too expensive for NHS use, said:

Although Roche proposed a discount to the full list price of Kadcyla, it made little difference to its value for money, leaving it well above the top of our specially extended range of cost effectiveness for cancer drugs.

We are really disappointed that Roche were not able to demonstrate more flexibility to help us make a positive recommendation. The company is well aware that we could not have recommend Kadcyla at the price it proposed.

– Sir Andrew Dillon
  1. National

NHS won't offer 'last hope' breast cancer drug

The NHS financial watchdog, Nice, has decided Kadcyla is too expensive. Credit: PA

The NHS will not offer a drug that gives patients with advanced breast cancer a last hope because it is too expensive.

Women with HER2-positive breast cancer, which has spread to other parts of their body and has not responded to initial treatment, can see their lives extended by around six months by Kadcyla.

However, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has ruled that at around £90,000 per patient, the drug is too expensive to recommend for widespread use in the health service.

The NHS financial watchdog criticised Roche, who manufactures the drug, for not discounting the treatment further.

Roche said that is had offered to cut the price of the drug and will be appealing Nice's decision.

North East wins £1m Heathrow advertising campaign

The region last night won a competition to win £1million worth of advertising across Heathrow Airport, with over 19,000 votes or ‘likes’ for in the Facebook campaign.

Heathrow has been running a competition where the public can vote for their favourite British region to receive £1m worth of free advertising at the airport.

The North East secured four advertisements which will then be shown across digital screens in all terminals at Heathrow from the end of August until the end of November 2014.

“The competition in total received over 40,000 votes for all four regions so the North East should feel proud to receive this prestigious prize. Heathrow is the gateway to Britain and sees around 73 million passengers a year travel through the airport. With seven flights a day from Heathrow to Newcastle we hope the winning images will inspire passengers to explore the beautiful North East during their visit to the UK."

– John Holland Kaye, Heathrow’s CEO

"The whole region really rallied behind the competition and there was a tremendous last push to secure a win for the North East."

– Sarah Stewart, Chief Executive at NewcastleGateshead Initiative

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Police headquarters move cancelled - but "not just for the money"

North Yorkshire Police has backed its commissioner's decision to cancel moving their headquarters.

The move from Newby Wiske to South Kilvington was originally billed as saving the force money - but the commissioner now claims stopping the move will in fact save up to £10 million.

“I understand and support the Commissioner’s decision to draw a close to the Northern Base project, to pursue other options.

“This is a difficult time financially for all public services, so if there is an opportunity for us to secure the right facilities - at a lower price tag - by doing things differently, then we must grasp it with both hands.

“North Yorkshire Police has been recognised by HMIC for its prudent approach to meeting financial challenges, but this decision not to pursue a Northern Base is not just about the money. It is part of looking at what we do and how we do it, for the sake of our communities.

“I am confident that North Yorkshire Police is on track to get the facilities it needs to serve the public in the best possible way.”

– Dave Jones, Chief Constable, North Yorkshire Police

Crime Commissioner Julia Mulligan says it was a "tough decision", and that a new opportunity to work with police in Cleveland had changed her mind.

"I am committed to making sure that North Yorkshire Police has the facilities it needs to serve our communities now and in the future – and that commitment has not changed.

“However, I also want to ensure that the North Yorkshire tax-payer gets the very best value for money, and with new options now available, I am no longer convinced that a new-build facility is able to offer that.

“Closing the Northern Base project was a tough decision to make, because a lot of effort has gone into the preparatory work, but it is the right thing to do.

"The new information we have about custody demand, and the possibilities offered through a partnership opportunity with Cleveland, give us scope to explore different accommodation solutions.

"And if that can save us around up to £10m, and cushion North Yorkshire Police from some of the tough economic challenges ahead, then we must take that opportunity.

“I believe working in partnership with Cleveland Police will have great potential to deliver real benefits to the people of North Yorkshire - including new ways of working to tackle cross-border crime, which is a real issue for many of our communities. I am looking forward to working with the PCC in Cleveland to take this forward.”

– Julia Mulligan, Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire
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North Yorkshire Police HQ move called off

Controversial plans to move the North Yorkshire Police headquarters have been called off.

Julia Mulligan, the county's Police and Crime Commissioner, had announced the site at Newby Wiske would move to South Kilvington.

Councillors in Thirsk condemned the move, claiming the building would be more suited to an "American city" than a town with a population of 220.

They were also concerned about traffic and the release of detainees.

The site at Newby Wiske will stay

The Commissioner had said the move would save money.

Cost of rented accommodation falls in the North East

Renting property in the North East is cheaper than it was a year ago according to the latest figures, bucking the national trend.

Specialist insurer HomeLet's Rental Index suggests that renting in the North East is now 2.3% cheaper than it was this time last year.

Average rents across the country went up by 6.3% and now stand at £862 per month.

In the North East the figure is £507 per month on average.

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Murder post office up for auction

Melsonby Post Office Credit: ITV Yorkshire

The post office in a North Yorkshire village where a woman was killed has is to go up for sale at auction.

Postmistress Diana Garbutt was murdered by her husband as she slept at their home in Melsonby in March 2010.

Murdered postmistress Diana Garbutt Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Robin Garbutt was jailed for life for what a judge called the "brutal, planned, cold-blooded murder" of his 40-year-old wife.

The three-bedroomed property has been left empty since the murder, but will now be auctioned off at York Racecourse at the end of the month. The estate agents have specified in the advert that a crime took place there, but do not go into further detail.

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