Manifesto calls for action in Cancer research

The ICR has launched a 10-point manifesto with recommendations for speeding up the development of innovative treatments and reducing prices.

The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) presented its manifesto at the Westminster Forum on Thursday 2nd May 2019, urging innovation and flexibility with regards to cancer drug access strategies.

Professor Paul Workman, CEO of the ICR, commented that:

“[This] means broadening NICE’s definition of innovation to not only talk about effectiveness in areas of unmet meet, but also to give precedence to treatments that tackle cancer in brand new ways.”

The manifesto has been developed in response to a recent survey of 1064 patients, which revealed that 12% had been delayed in obtaining a recommended cancer drug, and 9% had been denied a recommended cancer drug. The manifesto also builds upon findings from the ICR’s 2018 cancer access report, ‘From Patent to Patient’, which analysed data between 2000-2016 and found that cancer patients were waiting longer for drugs, partly due to trial and licensing issues.

The 10 point manifesto aims to address the following areas:

  • “NICE should prioritise genuinely innovative cancer treatments that attack cancer in brand new ways – as it is these which will give us new tools to overcome drug resistance.
  • Radical action is needed to bring down the extremely high prices of modern cancer drugs, such as tying prices to the benefits that treatments deliver, so that as many patients as possible can benefit from research advances.
  • Drug regulators need to be more flexible in assessing evidence, so that innovative new treatments can reach patients as quickly as possible.
  • Rival drug companies should be incentivised to trial their medicines together – so we can defeat cancer through combination treatment as we do with HIV.
  • We must expand drug research and clinical trials for children, and be flexible on age limits for trials to avoid denying older children and young adults access to new treatments.”

With regards to reducing cancer drug prices, the ICR’s suggestions include outcome-based pricing, varying prices according to therapeutic indications and capping prices at the price by the first company to the market.

For further information, you can read the ICR’s 10 point manifesto here.

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Published on 3. May 2019 in News, News UK