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Prostate cancer drug Cabazitaxel refused on NHS, but may be available for PMI customers

Published on 30/09/2011

Cabazitaxel, a drug that has been shown to extend the life of advanced prostate cancer sufferers has been deemed too expensive for use on the NHS by The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE), but could be available in the future for patients with private medical insurance.

Cabazitaxel was refused by NICE because at £22,000 on average per patient, it would not be cost effective, and there are concerns about its side effects on the heart and the liver.

In clinical trials, men with advanced prostate cancer who took cabazitaxel with an immune system suppressant lived for an extra ten weeks.

Owen Sharp, chief executive of the Prostate Cancer Charity, said: “These men currently have very few treatment options open to them when their cancer reaches this advanced stage.

“Increasing the number of treatments that may extend the lives of these men and allow them to spend precious time with their families is essential.”

The refusal comes after a report in The Lancet Oncology which warned that the cost of cancer care will become unsustainable in developed countries.

Any patients who want to receive Cabazitaxel on the NHS must now make an application through the government Cancer Drugs Fund.

But if these patients had previously purchased health insurance, they could have been covered for the use of Cabazitaxel on their policy. Health insurance often gives you access to drugs too expensive for use on the NHS.

As a licensed drug, Cabazitaxel could be funded by Bupa, AXA PPP healthcare, Aviva UK Health and PruHealth, although pre-authorisation is recommended.

Compare health insurance policies online with ActiveQuote now to make sure you are covered for new cancer treatment in the future.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2011

Categories:  Medical
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