MS Society launch petition for NICE to reconsider Multiple Sclerosis decision

The MS Society has begun a petition calling for NICE, NHS England and drug manufacturer, Roche, to rethink NICE’s decision to reject the first treatment to be licensed for the treatment of primary progressive multiple sclerosis (PPMS).

NICE announced in September that it would not be making ocrelizumab for PPMS available on the NHS in England and Wales, due to the drug being  too expensive.

According to the charity, there are currently no disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) for this type of multiple sclerosis (MS); therefore, it said it was imploring the three organisations to agree a deal to enable ocrelizumab to be made available on the NHS to anyone who could benefit.

“This is a deeply disappointing decision, denying many desperate people access to a treatment which may slow down their disability progression,” said Genevieve Edwards, director of external affairs at the MS Society.

“MS can be painful and often exhausting, and for many people living with the primary progressive form — which currently has no treatment on the NHS — ocrelizumab offered them a shot at a better future.

“Right now our utmost priority is ensuring everyone who could benefit from this treatment is given that opportunity.”

MS affects more than 100,000 people in the UK, and one in eight people with MS are diagnosed with PPMS, meaning that around 625 people each year could benefit from ocrelizumab.

The petition can be found on the MS Society website here.

Source: Pharmaceutical Journal