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Pfizer’s Xalkori price drop secures NICE recommendation

Published on 18/08/16 at 08:58am

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended Pfizer’s Xalkori (crizotinib) as a treatment for lung cancer, its second draft guidance after previously turning the drug down.

Crizotinib is the first pill-based alternative to intravenous chemotherapy used to treat advanced non-small-cell lung cancer. At its full price, the drug costs £51,000 per patient for a complete course of treatment.

Following NICE’s initial rejection, the decision was put out to public consultation, with Pfizer and members of the public able to comment and submit further evidence. The company submitted a new patient access scheme which provided the drug at a reduced price.

Alongside this new price and the discounts the pill would create for hospitals by eliminating costs associated with chemotherapy treatments, the committee concluded that the crizotinib could be considered value for money on the NHS.

Professor Carole Longson, director of the health technology evaluation centre said: “We are pleased that we have been able to work with Pfizer to secure a positive recommendation for crizotinib. As the only oral treatment available for people with untreated lung cancer, crizotinib is a really valuable option that will now be routinely available on the NHS. As part of our commitment to bring innovative new treatments to patients faster than ever before, crizotinib will be immediately funded by NHS England.”

 Around 459 patients are expected to be eligible for first-line treatment with crizotinib in England and Wales.

Matt Fellows

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