Cancer charities warn UK government not to leave patients out of drug pricing talks

Hannah Blake


A coalition of leading cancer charities has criticized the UK government for shutting patients out of crucial talks on changes to the system for pricing and assessing new drugs. Discussions have already begun to find a way to shift from the current pricing system, which many believe is too focused on cost, to a new system that will base drug prices according to their value to the patient and society. But these discussions only involve the government and the pharmaceutical industry – not the patients themselves.

These cancer charities, led by Prostate Cancer UK, are warning the government that ignoring the views of patients will seriously risk undermining the credibility and effectiveness of the new system before it has even been established.

“NHS patients throughout the UK rightly expect to be amongst the first in the world to access the best, most innovative treatments for their condition. But, as we know all too well, this is not always the case. Whilst we welcome efforts to move away from the current wieldy process of pricing drugs, it is clear that a new system which better reflects the value medicines bring to patients cannot be achieved if patients are not included in the process.

“We know that men and women affected by cancer have the experience, the knowledge and above all the desire to help develop a better system. Today patients are demanding the opportunity to do so. We stand full-square behind them and urge the government to ensure their voice is heard.”

Owen Sharp, Chief Executive of Prostate Cancer UK.

Together, the charities have published a report, “Value-based pricing: getting it right for people with cancer”, which highlights research into the views of people affecting by cancer and sets out some key recommendations by the charities, in an attempt to make sure patients are not denied a voice.




Related news:

Cancer charities warn govt over drug price talks (Pharma Times)

Reference links:

Prostate Cancer UK press release


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