Pfizer UK response to Breast Cancer Now Twitter Campaign: "NICE reject another promising drug - will you help?"
David Montgomery, Oncology Medical Director, Pfizer UK said: “First and foremost, Pfizer is committed to ensuring eligible patients have access to innovative and effective treatments such as palbociclib. We are already working with NICE and NHS England to try and find a solution and we welcome public debate on this topic.
We have long stated our concerns about the limitations within the system and have been calling for more engagement with NHS England and NICE to reach a solution which means modern cancer medicines can get to the patients who need them.
Fundamentally, we believe the current NICE appraisal methodology has limitations that significantly undervalue breast cancer medicines, causing delays in bringing these important new treatments to patients, and even preventing their availability altogether. These limitations are widely recognised and we echo claims from charities and experts that the current system is unfit for purpose.
At the moment the system requires new cancer medicines to be priced at a level similar to that of chemotherapies 15 years ago. Even with significant discounts, many new breast cancer therapies have and will continue to be deemed not cost-effective. The current approach is not viable, nor is it a formula to fuel further innovation, and we are now in a situation where women with metastatic breast cancer in England are missing out on transformative treatments that are available elsewhere in Europe.
As cancer rates rise and medical innovation advances, we support calls for NHS England and NICE to urgently review the valuation and appraisal process of pioneering cancer therapies so that patients, now and in the future, can access these medicines quickly. We will continue to work hard with NICE and NHS England on this matter.”