People in Wales with a form of cystic fibrosis need the same access to a new 'life-changing' drug that people in England are getting, according to a charity. The Cystic Fibrosis Trust has called on the Welsh Government's Health Minister to speed up the approval process.
It's written a letter to Lesley Griffiths, saying that withholding a decision on funding Kalydeco (also known as Ivacaftor) here until May would cause 'considerable heartache' and 'agony' for families here. It has been available in England from 1 January 2013.
– Letter from Ed Owen, The Cystic Fibrosis Trust's Chief Executive
We are very concerned that, because the All Wales Medicines Strategy Group is not expected to come a decision until May, Welsh patients face a wait of at least four months, when the drug is freely available within the NHS England. A decision this week means Scottish patients are now also able to access Kalydeco from 1 March. This is causing considerable heartache and agony for families affected in Wales. The Cystic Fibrosis Trust would be appalled at a situation where people in Wales were denied a potentially life-changing treatment freely available to those in England and soon Scotland.