NICE rejects cancer drug for NHS
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has rejected plans for everolimus to be made available on the NHS.
NICE ruled that the drug, which was proven to help prolong the life of kidney cancer patients, was too expensive.
Two other drugs, sunitinib and pazopanib, have been approved for use by the NHS. However, everolimus, which is also known as Afinitor and Novartis, has shown to increase overall survival rates where the other two had failed.
In justifying the decision not to recommend the drug for NHS use, NICE said it “does not provide enough benefit to patients to justify its high cost.”
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They did however accept that despite the research into the effect of the drug on survival times being inconclusive, the “overall survival gain would be likely to be more than three months”.
The charity Kidney Cancer UK is advising doctors and patients seeking the drug to ask for help from the government’s cancer drug fund, which is used for medication which has not available on the NHS.
Talking about the decision not to make everolimus available on the NHS, Dr Pat Hanlon, from Kidney Cancer UK, said his reaction was “one of deep disappointment.”
He added: “We know the NHS cannot afford all drugs, but they are effectively robbing people of a few months of life.”
The drug, which would have cost more than £200,000 for a full course of treatment, is used for second-line treatment of renal cell carcinoma, an advanced type of kidney cancer.
Approximately 4,000 people are diagnosed with that particular advanced type of cancer every year.
The chief executive of NICE, Sir Andrew Dillon, said: “We regret not to be able to recommend this drug, but we have to ensure that the money available to the NHS, for treating cancer and other conditions is used to best effect, particularly when the NHS, like the rest of the public sector, is under considerable financial pressure.”
Schneider Electric's intelligent patient room: need to know
Schneider Electric has launched a virtual showcase that features its new "intelligent patient room". What is it exactly?
Who: Schneider Electric is a multinational that develops energy and automation solutions for many different industries - including hospitality, education, defence, and healthcare. Founded in 1836, today it is a Fortune 500 company, and it currently provides technology to 40% of hospitals around the world, among them Penn Medicine, one of the top hospitals in the US where Schneider's EcoStruxure for Healthcare is deployed, an IoT solution.
What: Schneider has launched its Innovation Experience Live Healthcare Lab, an immersive experience that takes visitors through a demonstration of a hospital, including the doctor’s office, the operating room, and the intelligent patient room.
The room features a digital patient footwall - a touchscreen that creates a single reference point for patients, families and healthcare providers, by incorporating care information, entertainment and environmental controls all in one place. A separate digital patient door display has important information for healthcare staff.
All Schneider's equipment is low-voltage, and integrated so that the patient room, clinical needs and IT are all seamlessly connected, what Schneider calls a digital “system of systems.”
Why: Mike Sanders, Customer Projects & Services in Healthcare Innovation at Schneider Electric, explains: “The hospital of the future will need to put the patient experience at the forefront, using innovative and connected systems to provide superior in-hospital care experiences.”
“With the shift to remote work and business brought forth by the pandemic, we knew that we needed to invest in a new virtual experience that showcases our vision for a truly integrated healthcare experience. We believe our intelligent patient room is the solution that our healthcare partners and customers have been looking for, and we’re excited to offer a way for them to experience it no matter where they are in the world.”
Where: The virtual experience was modelled after the new innovations installed at Penn Medicine in Philadelphia, the first real-world installation of Schneider Electric’s fully integrated intelligent patient room technology. It is currently being hosted at the company’s St. Louis Innovation Hub and Innovation Executive Briefing Center (IEBC) facility.