KERRY Fine Gael TD, Brendan Griffin, has welcomed the announcement today (Friday) by Minister for Health, James Reilly, to make the Cystic Fibrosis drug Kalydeco available to CF sufferers in Ireland. Deputy Griffin had raised the matter in the Dail this week (question and answer below) and says that the decision will make an enormous difference to the 120 or so CF patients nationwide who will benefit from this new drug. Deputy Griffin commended Minister Reilly for this major commitment to CF sufferers.
Further information from Brendan Griffin on 087-6528841
QUESTION NOS: 209 DÁIL
QUESTIONSaddressed to the Minister of State at the Department of Health (Mr White) by Deputies for WRITTEN ANSWER on31/01/2013 *
To ask the Minister for Health the position regarding negotiations between the Health Service Executive and a company (details supplied) for a price reduction on the cystic fibrosis drug, Kalydeco; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
. Details Supplied: Vertex Pharmaceuticals REPLY. The HSE has received an application for the inclusion of Kalydeco (generic name: Ivacaftor) in the GMS and community drugs schemes which is being considered in line with the procedures agreed with the Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association (IPHA). These include clearly documented processes and timelines for the assessment of new medicines in as timely a fashion as possible. In accordance with these procedures, the National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE) conducts a Health Technology Assessment (HTA) which provides detailed information on the potential budget impact of the medicine. It also assesses whether the medicine is cost effective at the price quoted by the company in question. The NCPE published its report on the cost-effectiveness of Kalydeco on the 21st of January. The report concluded that “In view of the very high drug acquisition cost, the significant budget impact, the absence of long term clinical data and the fact that the company has failed to demonstrate the cost-effectiveness of ivacaftor we cannot recommend reimbursement of ivacaftor at the submitted price of €234,804 per patient per annum. A mechanism such as a performance based risk sharing scheme and/or a significant reduction in price could facilitate access to ivacaftor treatment for cystic fibrosis patients with the G551D CFTR mutation”. The NCPE report is an important input to assist decision making and will help inform the next stage of the process which involves further discussions with the manufacturer of the drug, in accordance with the aforementioned procedures agreed with the pharmaceutical industry. The HSE assessment process is intended to arrive at a decision on the funding of Kalydeco that is clinically appropriate, fair, consistent and sustainable. The HSE understands that patients, the Cystic Fibrosis Association of Ireland and clinicians are very anxious that a decision be made as soon as possible. No further comment is possible at this time as the decision making process is ongoing.