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SMC recommends Novartis’ Gilenya for severe form of MS

Leads wave of drug reimbursement opinions in Scotland

Scotland flag

Scotland has become the first country in the UK to recommend Gilenya (fingolimod) for patients with a severe form of relapsing multiple sclerosis.

The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC), which provides healthcare guidance for people in Scotland, recommended the oral drug as a first line option for people rapidly evolving severe relapsing remitting MS (RES RRMS).

The recommendation means that NHS patients in Scotland now have an oral alternative to hospital-based infusion with Biogen Idec's Tysabri (natalizumab), required every 28 days.

SMC recommendations for Boehringer, Janssen, Takeda and MSD

Several other companies received positive recommendations from the SMC, including Boehringer Ingelheim.

The German company had two medicines recommended, including Pradaxa (dabigatran etexilate), which the SMC said should be available to treat and prevent deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE)

The SMC also backed Boehringer's Jardiance (empagliflozin) to help control blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes, although use of the drug is restricted in certain situations.

Janssen continued to expand its hepatitis C business with a recommendation for Olysio (simeprevir), while both Takeda and MSD received two recommendations each.

Takeda's Vipdomet (alogliptin with metformin) was recommended for the treatment of adult patients with type 2 diabetes to provide glycaemic control, while Adcetris (brentuximab vedotin) was backed for the treatment of adult patients with relapsed or refractory CD30+ Hodgkin lymphoma.

The SMC issued positive guidance to MSD for Simponi (golimumab) to treat moderately to severely active ulcerative colitis and for Noxafil (posaconazole) to treat fungal infection.

SMC says no to Kadcyla

The SMC joined England's National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in denying NHS reimbursement for Roche's Kadcyla (trastuzumab emtansine) in breast cancer.

The SMC said Roche's “justification of the treatment's cost in relation to its health benefits was not sufficient to gain acceptance”.

Article by
Kirstie Pickering

15th October 2014

From: Sales

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