Sunday 24 June 2018

€117m of medicines at centre of row to be made available

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

Nine new high-tech medicines are expected to become available to patients from November.

The drugs, which treat cancer, heart disease and depression, will be paid for by the HSE, according to a memo to Cabinet.

The medicines, costing around €117m, were at the centre of a row earlier this year after the HSE said it did not have the funding.

The availability of the drugs has been delayed to allow protocols about their use to be drawn up for doctors.

Meanwhile, Cancer Trials Ireland announced the opening of the Irish arm of an international cancer trial that is investigating promising cures for leukaemia.

It is expected that up to 60 patients from Ireland with a type of leukaemia known as CLL (chronic lymphocytic leukaemia) will participate in the trial. Around 200 people a year are diagnosed with the disease.

The trial will open at hospitals in Cork, Waterford, Galway and three in Dublin - St James's Hospital, the Mater Hospital and Beaumont Hospital.

The trial aims to test treatments for leukaemia that could be more effective and have fewer side-effects than standard chemotherapy treatments.

Irish Independent

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