Mitraclip awaits funding decision after positive MSAC recommendation


MBS funding has been recommended for transcatheter mitral valve replacement (TMVr, Mitraclip), but a decision on reimbursement now awaits sign off by the Minister for Health.

The Medical Services Advisory Committee has supported the public funding of reduction of mitral regurgitation through tissue approximation, using transvenous/transeptal techniques, in a decision made earlier in 2020.

In its review of an application by Mitraclip maker Abbott, MSAC concluded the procedure was safe, effective, and cost effective subject to a reduction in the asking price.

MSAC concluded that the evidence presented from the COAPT trial supported the claim for noninferior safety and superior effectiveness for the FMR population although it was less certain  – but still reasonable – for  the DMR population.

“MSAC supported public funding of transcatheter mitral valve replacement with MitraClip for patients with mitral regurgitation due to FMR and DMR who can’t have open heart surgery,” it concluded.

The committee also recommended establishing a transcatheter mitral valve replacement (TMVr) registry as a condition of listing.

Health minister Greg Hunt is due to make a decision on funding of Mitraclip and the procedure in November, according to media reports.

Dr Tony Walton, Melbourne cardiologist said he supported MBS listing, which would make the procedure accessible for both public and private patients.

“If you look at the data from the trials, it helps keep people out of the hospital and it saves people’s lives,” he said.

“It saves money. A hospital stay for patients is very expensive.”

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