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Cambridge MP raises need for faster access to new medicines

Cambridge MP Daniel Zeichner raised the case of Julian Wheel from Cambridge, whose granddaughter has cystic fibrosis, during a debate on the implications of the Accelerated Access Review for cystic fibrosis and other conditions.

The long-awaited Accelerated Access Review (AAR) was published in October 2016 and set out recommendations to speed up access to innovative healthcare and technologies, and to improve efficiency and outcomes for NHS patients.

One recommendation in the AAR is a fully funded early access to medicines scheme. The current early access to medicines scheme is not funded, which poses a barrier to many small biotech companies from engaging with the scheme, impairing innovation.

The Government has yet to publish a response to the recommendations.

Daniel Zeichner MP said: “New drugs can offer real hope to scores of people affected by conditions like cystic fibrosis, as well as their families and loved ones. But new drugs are expensive and our health system is struggling to cope. The Government needs to look at how they can better incentivise innovative research while keeping costs down - to ensure everyone has access to the medicines they desperately need at a price our NHS can afford.”

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