Innovation, Prime Minister? Yes please!

Wednesday, 2 Dec 2015

In an open letter to the Prime Minister Hepatitis Australia has called for the government to honour its commitment to innovation by funding new interferon-free hepatitis C medicines.

The letter was sparked by the omission of Sovaldi, Harvoni, Daklinza and Viekira Pak from the 1 December PBS listings, despite having received PBAC recommendations in March this year.

“Prime Minister, if you want Australia to be a country that encourages, values and rewards innovation, then you have to be prepared to fund the fruits of medical innovation,” wrote Helen Tyrell, CEO of Hepatitis Australia in the letter published on the PharmaDispatch website.

Achieving the best possible price for medicines was a laudable aim, she said, but a policy that required every dollar spent on a new medicine to be offset with a dollar saving from another medicine was counterproductive to the Government’s innovation agenda.

“Decades of underinvestment in the prevention and treatment of hepatitis C mandates urgent investment in treatments that hold the key to the elimination of hepatitis C in our lifetime” she said.

The full article can be accessed here.

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