The ISF has made a submission to the National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE) in relation to a new therapy for atopic dermatitis (also known as atopic eczema) and to advocate for wider access for patients to a potentially ‘life changing’ new drug.
In 2017, the European Medicines Agency approved a drug called dupilumab (brand name: Dupixent) for the treatment of moderate-to-severe atopic eczema in adult patients who are candidates for systemic therapy. This new drug is administered by injection under the skin.
Dupilumab is a targeted therapy believed to work by blocking the actions of two key proteins [interleukin-4 (IL 4) and interleukin-13 (IL 13)] involved in the inflammatory response, which plays a part in the development of atopic dermatitis.
David McMahon, CEO of the ISF, thanked all those involved in drafting the submission which included patient testimonials and life stories, providing unique and powerful perspectives about the day-to-day burden of living with atopic eczema, along with recent findings from the ISF eczema survey and published literature.
This new biologic shows promise to extend the range of treatments available for patients with atopic eczema, and potentially heralds the beginning of a new era of life-changing treatments for this distressing condition.
The NCPE has a responsibility for reviewing the cost-effectiveness and budget impact of individual medicines in Irish healthcare settings, the NCPE feeds into the reimbursement decision taken by the HSE Drugs Group, which ultimately decides when new treatments become widely accessible to patients.
High cost medicines and/or those with a significant budget impact are subjected to a formal pharmacoeconomic assessment, in accordance with the existing Irish Healthcare Technology Assessment (HTA) Guidelines.
The ISF is formally registered with the NCPE and have recently completed a patient organisation submission of evidence for the Dupilumab HTA.
The outcome of the HTA assessment will be published on the NCPE website in due course. Progress can be monitored by following this link: http://www.ncpe.ie/drugs/dupilumab-dupixent/