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GlaxoSmithKline sidesteps NICE by negotiating with individual hospitals

BMJ 2009; 339 doi: (Published 26 October 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;339:b4406
  1. Andrew Jack
  1. 1Financial Times

    Women seeking a new treatment for breast cancer will not have an equal chance of receiving it, after the government’s drugs advisory body refused reimbursement for lapatinib (Tyverb). Patients will be subject to the decisions of their local hospital or forced to pay out of their own pocket.

    In a final appeal last Wednesday, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) ruled that GlaxoSmithKline’s drug, which targets women with the Her2 gene mutation who fail with trastuzumab (Herceptin), was not cost effective.

    The decision came after GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) attempted to reduce the price of the oral drug, estimated at an average annual equivalent of more than £25 000 (€27 000; $41 000) per patient. The company suggested a “risk sharing” scheme, in …

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