Cystic Fibrosis: Orkambi

Department of Health written question – answered on 12th December 2017.

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Photo of Michael Fallon Michael Fallon Conservative, Sevenoaks

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of Orkambi in treating people diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

In July 2016, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), the independent body that develops guidance on drugs and treatments for clinical / cost effectiveness for the National Health Service in England and Wales, did not recommend access to the Vertex drug Orkambi as although clinically significant for managing cystic fibrosis, the longer term outcomes and benefits were not sufficient to justify its considerable costs.

Since then there has been a constructive dialogue underway between the company, NHS England and NICE, including discussion hosted through NICE’s confidential ‘Office for Market Access’. Both NHS England and NICE have been consistent in advice to Vertex that progress can only be made by working through NICE appraisal processes and the existing commercial framework.

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