Tuesday 26 September 2017

Hope for cystic fibrosis patients as drug giant and HSE hold talks

Supporters of people with cystic fibrosis, their families and friends protest at Dáil Éireann over Orkambi. Photo: Shane O'Neill Photography.
Supporters of people with cystic fibrosis, their families and friends protest at Dáil Éireann over Orkambi. Photo: Shane O'Neill Photography.
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

The pharmaceutical company which makes the expensive cystic fibrosis drug Orkambi said it has made the HSE "another proposal" to provide "immediate access to the treatment for all eligible patients".

Vertex and HSE officials resumed talks on Wednesday to try to agree on a price and will meet again next week.

A Vertex spokeswoman said: "We cannot accept a deal that would inappropriately restrict access to Orkambi for eligible patients nor jeopardise our ability to continue to develop life-changing new medicines for the two out of three people with cystic fibrosis who still don't have a medicine to treat the underlying cause of their disease."

Health Minister Simon Harris said he had written to his counterparts in England, Scotland, Canada and Australia regarding Orkambi and expected further contact with other countries in the coming days.

There is potential for collaboration between Ireland, the Netherlands and others countries.

Irish Independent

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