- The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has launched a consultation on its guidance on using mepolizumab for treating severe asthma in the NHS today.
Asthma UK has responded as follows:
Dr Samantha Walker, Director of Research and Policy at Asthma UK, said: “Naturally we are very disappointed once again with NICE’s recommendation that mepolizumab should not be used in the NHS in England. There are currently 250,000 people with asthma in the UK who struggle to breathe every day without effective treatments, and whilst we know mepolizumab will not work for everyone, it will work for many. Mepolizumab has been shown to be clinically effective at reducing severe asthma symptoms in people with a certain type of asthma and should be available to those people who are most likely to benefit from it. Obviously this needs to be at a price that the NHS can afford so we expect NICE and the manufacturer to continue to work together and find a solution.
“This decision highlights the challenge we need to address to ensure new treatments are made available to those people with severe asthma who will benefit from them. Unless this happens they will continue to be at increased risk of life threatening asthma attacks, live with disabling symptoms that often prevent them living their normal lives and higher rates of depression and anxiety.
“Asthma UK will develop its consultation response - which will include speaking to those living with severe asthma and the doctors and nurses who look after them - and submit this to the committee.”