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Life extending bowel cancer drugs refused for use on NHS

Published on 05/09/2011

Patients with private health insurance may have access to 3 treatments which have been turned down for use on the NHS by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE).

Avastin, Erbitux and Vectibix are the three drugs which could help prolong the life of people with metastatic bowel cancer.

Andrew Dillion, NICE's chief executive, said: 'Metastatic colorectal cancer is when the primary cancer has spread from the colon or rectum to other parts of the body, such as the liver. It can be a devastating disease for both the patient and their family.'

Whilst NICE said that there was 'no evidence' that Avastin prolonged life, the organisation admitted that Erbitux and Vectibix provided a 'survival benefit' to patients with advanced bowel cancer.

But with a treatment of Erbitux costing £90,000 a year and Vectibix up to £150,000 a year, these drugs were deemed 'cost ineffective' for use on the NHS. Instead, patients will have to apply for these drugs through the Govenment Cancer Drugs Fund.

Mike Hobday, head of policy at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: 'this decision is very disappointing news for people with bowel cancer'.

Private medical cover holders often have access to cutting edge drugs and treatments not available on the NHS. Compare health insurance policies online with ActiveQuote now to make sure you are covered in the future.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2011

Categories:  MedicalNHS and Hospitals
Life extending bowel cancer drugs refused for use on NHSPatients with private health insurance may have access to 3 treatments which have been turned down for use on the NHS by the National Inst    tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

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