A 29-year-old woman will die without a new drug that the NHS is refusing to provide despite the manufacturer offering it to her for free, it emerged today.
Caroline Cassin, 29, who suffers from Cystic Fibrosis (CF) has been offered a new drug free of charge for a limited period by the makers but her NHS hospital is refusing.
Her family say she will die soon without it, yet managers at Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham say it would be unethical to provide the drug under the deal, only for it to be withdrawn later.
I could understand - not necessarily agree with - the NHS saying, “No, we won’t pay for this drug.” That isn’t at issue here. The NHS is saying, “No, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, we forbid you to give this drug to this young lady for free because it would be temporary.” It’s this kind of thinking that ensures that developing drugs and treatments for CF and other horrible diseases will not happen, as government-run healthcare will forbid/prevent new drugs/treatments from reaching the point where economies of scale lower costs.