register

News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

AstraZeneca, BMS and Noxopharm address findings of inquiry report into rare cancers

Health Industry Hub | May 20, 2024 |

Pharma News: The Senate Community Affairs References Committee has released its inquiry report into Equitable access to diagnosis and treatment for individuals with rare and less common cancers, including neuroendocrine cancer.

While each rare and less common cancer individually affects a small number of Australians, collectively, they impact a substantial number, with approximately 52,000 Australians diagnosed annually. These cancers account for 30% of all cancer diagnoses in Australia but disproportionately represent 42% of all cancer deaths.

The Senate inquiry aimed to identify factors contributing to inequitable diagnosis, treatment, research, and support for those affected by rare and less common cancers. It also sought to propose measures to address these issues, aiming to ease patients’ cancer journeys, improve health outcomes, and close the survival gap.

AstraZeneca, Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS), and Australian-based Noxopharm contributed insights to the inquiry through submissions and/or hearings.

Ben McDonald, Country President of AstraZeneca Australia and New Zealand, highlighted that cancer remains one of Australia’s most significant health costs, with patients enduring lengthy waits for new medicines. He welcomed the report and its 41 recommendations, particularly those aimed at increasing equitable uptake and access to genomic screening to eliminate existing barriers to timely and accurate diagnoses.

“We also welcome the Committee’s strong observations around inequities in access to treatments for people with rare and less common cancers, demonstrated through not only access data but also lived patient experience,” McDonald said.

“Currently, Australian cancer patients face a significant time lag when it comes to accessing new medicines, with a 442-day wait, on average, between a new cancer medicine receiving approval by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and being made available on the PBS,” he added.

At the Sydney hearing, AstraZeneca advocated for an Interim Cancer Fund to provide earlier access to new medicines for specific cancer patients with no other treatment options.

“Australians who are diagnosed with a rare or less common cancer each year do not have time to wait. An interim cancer fund could bridge this lengthy delay,” McDonald emphasised.

Noxopharm CEO, Dr Gisela Mautner, told Health Industry Hub, “We are heartened by the 10-year Australian Cancer Plan, launched in 2023, and highly encouraged by the scope of the Committee’s review into rare cancers. This collaboration goes a long way to addressing greater inclusiveness and will ultimately improve the prospects for all Australians afflicted by these debilitating diseases.”

“In terms of Commonwealth funding for rare cancer research, we strongly welcome the recommendations, particularly the calls for ongoing funding and greater private sector investment in related research and clinical trial sponsorship in Australia,” Dr Mautner continued. “The insightful measures outlined in the report would help local biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries make a significant contribution to the development of lifesaving drugs for patients currently facing limited options in the rare cancer setting.”

Senior Director of Access, Policy, and Advocacy at BMS, Dr Greg Cook, stated “BMS welcomes the inquiry report. We acknowledge the collective advocacy efforts of the rare cancer community, working together to drive meaningful change.”

“It is particularly timely that recommendations 10 and 11 within this report implore the Australian Government to utilise the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Policy and Methods Review to provide patients with rare and less common cancers with timely and affordable access to novel medicines,” Dr Cook added. “We are hopeful that the adoption of the recommendations in this report will help those impacted by rare and less common cancers have fair and equitable access to the care they deserve.”

In reimagining healthcare across the entire patient journey, Health Industry HubTM is the ONLY one-stop-hub bringing the diversity of Pharma, MedTech, Diagnostics & Biotech sectors together to inspire meaningful change.

The exclusive leadership and influencer podcasts and vodcasts add huge value to our breaking news coverage. The content on Health Industry Hub is copyright protected and should only be accessed under individual user licenses. Please click here to subscribe and visit T&Cs here.


News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

Clinicians unveil Novartis and BMS practice-changing trial results

Clinicians unveil Novartis and BMS practice-changing trial results

Health Industry Hub | June 24, 2024 |

Pharma News: Australia, known for its alarming melanoma rates, witnesses one person diagnosed with the disease every 30 minutes, and […]

More


News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

Hearts4heart leads awareness week, amid progress in Boehringer Ingelheim and AstraZeneca therapies

Hearts4heart leads awareness week, amid progress in Boehringer Ingelheim and AstraZeneca therapies

Health Industry Hub | June 24, 2024 |

Pharma News: Heart failure is a significant health concern in Australia, affecting approximately half a million people, with over 67,000 […]

More


News & Trends - MedTech & Diagnostics

Cardiologists mark Australian first with Boston Scientific's intracoronary imaging system

Cardiologists mark Australian first with Boston Scientific’s intracoronary imaging system

Health Industry Hub | June 24, 2024 |

MedTech & Diagnostics News: Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) has faced substantial complications and failure rates, despite advances in medical devices […]

More


Leadership & Management

AbbVie New Zealand welcomes new leadership amid global moves

AbbVie New Zealand welcomes new leadership amid global moves

Health Industry Hub | June 24, 2024 |

Leadership & Management: In line with its global talent development plan, AbbVie has announced a significant change in leadership for […]

More


This content is copyright protected. Please subscribe to gain access.