Access widened to funded medicines

Last updated 05:00 13/11/2012

Relevant offers

Health

'Endless winter' as MidCentral District Health Board finances go $1 million into the red Mash Trust in deficit; Government support needed, says CEO Upsurge of abuse on mental health workers at Waikato DHB Son and father both diagnosed with terminal cancer Invercargill man Greg Douglas fights ''horrible'' disease as cure remains elusive Christchurch friends to join in 700km trek for Blind Foundation Happy birthday to my liver! New Zealand's first liver transplant recipient celebrates 30 years Pressure mounts for smarter approach to breast cancer screening Stacey Kirk: Donor changes will save lives, but for those who died waiting on a transplant 'When you face the reality of your mortality it changes you'

Pharmac has spent more than $21.5 million on new drugs and widening access to publicly funded medicines in the past year.

Blood thinning drug Pradaxa, also known as dabigatran, was the most expensive new drug to be funded, with an estimated annual cost of $16 million.

Two new drugs targeting specific types of breast and kidney cancer were also added to the list of funded medications.

More people can access the drug rituximab, which is used to treat some kinds of lymphomas. Breast cancer drug docetaxel has also been made more widely available and access to funded treatment for Crohn's disease, Cystic fibrosis and asthma were widened.

The Government's drug-buying agency yesterday released its annual report for the year ending June 30, which showed 14 new medicines were funded in the past year and access to 10 others was widened.

An extra 56,840 patients were expected to benefit from the changes, on top of the record 3.3 million New Zealanders who received fully funded medication in the past year.

Pharmac stayed within its $777.4m budget in a year which saw it take on additional roles, including managing the national immunisation schedule and hospital medicines and medical devices.

It also contributed $379,000 towards a research trial in Finland looking at whether the nine week or 12-month duration of breast cancer drug Herceptin offers a better treatment.

Ad Feedback

- The Dominion Post

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should fluoride in water be the responsibility of central government?

Yes

No

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content