IPF drug pirfenidone now listed on PBS

Thursday, 6 Jul 2017

Pirfenidone (Esbriet) has finally been added to the PBS for patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

The PBS subsidy will come as a relief for patients who have been waiting for a number of years for improved access to the drug.

The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) has previously recognised ‘the high clinical need for an effective treatment for IPF and the significant debilitating effects of the disease on quality of life’.

Pirfenidone has been shown to slow progression of the disease, reduce the decline in FVC over time and reduce all-cause mortality.

The PBAC had previously rejected the application for PBS listing in November 2015 and again in March 2016. A subsequent application in November 2016 was deferred and then finally approved at a special meeting one month later.

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