Government responds to our letter on the Cancer Drugs Fund
In November Bloodwise, along with a number of other blood cancer charities, wrote an open letter to Government regarding the Cancer Drugs Fund and the removal of blood cancer drugs from the list. You can now read the Government’s response to our letter below.
As a member of the Blood Cancers Alliance (BCA), an informal coalition of charities representing the blood cancer community, in November Bloodwise wrote an open letter to The Times on the Cancer Drugs Fund and the removal of blood cancer drugs from the list.
The letter was also sent directly to the Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt and Prime Minister David Cameron. Attached was a petition containing around 27,000 signatures - which was started by Anna Schuh, a leading name in haematology - calling for the Government to review their decision to remove blood cancer drugs from the list.
The BCA has now received a response to the letter and petition from Minister of Life Sciences George Freeman MP, as he has a remit for the Cancer Drugs Fund. He is also overseeing a comprehensive review of the access to medicines system, known as the Accelerated Access Review, so he was considered best placed to respond to our letter.
You can see a copy of the response here.
Over the course of 2016, the BCA will be continuing work on the Cancer Drugs Fund and representing the interests of blood cancer patients, both collectively and as individual charities. This is particularly relevant as the letter does not address the issues that the letter and petition raises.
NHS England and the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recently announced the launch of a consultation on proposals for a new Cancer Drugs Fund operating model. Bloodwise will be looking carefully at these proposals over the coming weeks and responding to the consultation in the New Year. You can read more about the future of the Cancer Drugs Fund here.