NICE rules that drug used in advanced liver cancer is not cost effective for the NHS

BMJ 2009; 339 doi: (Published 23 November 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;339:b4956
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. 1London

    A UK cancer charity has called for a change in the way that drugs are priced, in response to the decision from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) that sorafenib (Nexavar) should not be used in the treatment of advanced liver cancer because it is judged not “a cost effective use of NHS resources.”

    Sorafenib was considered under special criteria introduced by NICE in January for drugs used in end of life care (BMJ 2009;338:b3, doi:10.1136/bmj.b3). These potentially allow the use of drugs that exceed the usual limit of £30 000 (€33 000; $49 000) per quality adjusted life year (QALY) gained because they are for patients with short life expectancy, and numbers are relatively small. But NICE still considered in this case that the magnitude of the …

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