NICE is likely to reject bevacizumab for bowel cancer

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 31 August 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c4728
  1. Caroline White
  1. 1London

    The body that evaluates treatments for the NHS in England and Wales, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), is unlikely to recommend bevacizumab (Avastin) for patients with advanced bowel cancer, despite attempts by the manufacturer to make it cheaper for the NHS to use.

    In an interim ruling NICE has indicated it is likely to reject bevacizumab, in combination with oxaliplatin and either 5-fluoracil or capecitabine, for the treatment of metastatic bowel cancer on the grounds that the costs of the drug outweighed its clinical benefits. It has already rejected the drug in the past.

    An estimated 6500 people a year would be eligible for bevacizumab, which costs around £20 800 (€25 300; $32 200) for one year. However, if approved by NICE the drug would be free after the first …

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