Hot on the heels of NICE rejecting Ocrevus (ocrelizumab) as a treatment of PPMS by the National Health Service (NHS) in England, it has been blocked as a therapy for relapsing MS in Scotland.
The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) says it does not consider ocrelizumab to be cost effective for the NHS in Scotland as a treatment for relapsing MS in comparison to the existing disease modifying drugs. The SMC states that Roche, parHot on the heels of NICE rejecting Ocrevus (ocrelizumab) as a treatment of PPMS by the National Health Service (NHS) in England, it has been blocked as a therapy for relapsing MS in Scotland.ent company of Genentech – the manufacturer of the drug, did not present a sufficiently robust economic assessment of the drug’s use for it to be accepted.
MS organisations in the UK have been quick to react. The MS Trust issued a statement that it is very disappointed in the SMC’s decision.
Ocrevus first to slow PPMS progress
MS Trust’s director of development, Jo Sopala, said: “We are very concerned at the continuing delay for people with MS to access ocrelizumab in Scotland. For people with relapsing MS, it expands the range of MS treatments by offering a different dosing schedule, a different mode of action, minimal monitoring and a low risk of side effects compared to existing disease modifying drugs.
“In primary progressive MS, ocrelizumab is the first treatment which has been shown to slow down progression. We will continue to make the strongest possible case for NHS Scotland approval of ocrelizumab for both relapsing and primary progressive MS.
Certainly, all is not lost as NICE initially made the same decision, for the same reason, about the use of Ocrevus to treat relapsing MS in England. Then, last month, after some negotiations on price, recommended its use. Now it has blocked its use for treating PPMS.
Now, we can look forward to further negotiations which I am sure will lead to the eventual approval of Ocrevus by NICE and SMC – for both types of MS.
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50shadesofsun.com is the personal website of Ian Franks, a freelance medical writer and editor for various health information sites. He enjoyed a successful career as a journalist, from reporter to editor in the print media. He gained a Journalist of the Year award in his native UK. Ian received a diagnosis of MS in 2002 and now lives in the south of Spain. He uses a wheelchair and advocates on mobility and accessibility issues.
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