Melanoma drug 'too expensive' for NHS - Telegraph
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has issued draft guidance turning down the drug on the grounds that it is too expensive and the long-term benefits of it are not clear.
The drug named Zelboraf, or vemurafenib, is for malignant melanoma that has spread and carries a specific genetic mutation and costs around £1,750 per patient per week.
The makers Roche agreed an undisclosed discount for the NHS but Nice still felt it was not cost effective.
Sir Andrew Dillon, chief executive of Nice said: “We need to be sure that new treatments provide sufficient benefits to patients to justify the significant cost the NHS is being asked to pay. Vemurafenib is an expensive drug and its long term benefits are difficult to quantify."
It is thought the drug may extend life from around 9.6 months to more than 13 months, a spokesman for Roche said.