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To: Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health
Don't cut life-saving blood cancer drugs
We urge Jeremy Hunt to review the National Cancer Drug Fund’s decision to withdraw life-saving drugs for patients suffering from blood cancer.
We also urge pharmaceutical companies to review their pricing policies for the NHS.
Doctors should be able to choose the right treatment at the right time for their patients. For many types of cancer, the current NICE approved drugs that are available are totally inadequate.
Why is this important?
On Friday 4th of September 2015 the National Cancer Drug Fund announced it was withdrawing life-saving drugs for patients suffering from blood cancer by the 1st of November.
Patients with myeloma, chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, Hodgkin's Lymphoma and chronic myeloid leukaemia are particularly affected.
Many of these drugs don't just prolong life by a few months. They actually have a very significant impact on overall life expectancy and also on quality of life and are part of routine care in many European countries and the United States.
Without access to these drugs, we cannot deliver on personalised medicine, a concept that is now widely accepted in the NHS.
We also believe that the decision making process about cancer drugs that are available needs to change so that it includes specialists for each disease area to weigh up the clinical benefits and associated costs for these treatments.
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