Breast cancer drugs blocked from NHS


Two more cancer drugs have been provisionally banned for NHS after it was decided they were too expensive for the potential results.

In its draft guidance the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) ruled that lapatinib or trastuzumab should not be prescribed for a particular type and stage of breast cancer. Nice explained it was uncertain of the extent to which the drugs can improve overall survival compared to existing treatments and that they did not appear to represent value for money for the NHS. Estimates by the manufacturers suggested the cost for lapatinib would be more than £74,400 per quality adjusted life year (QALY) and that trastuzumab would cost more than £51,000 per QALY. Both...

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