Key CF drugs listed
Two new medicines for patients with cystic fibrosis are being listed on the PBS.
The drugs Symdeko and Orkambi will be on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme from December 1, according to Health Minister Greg Hunt.
The medicines that would otherwise cost close to $250,000 a year will now be available for as little as $6.50 a script.
In particular, Symdeko will be available for patients aged 12 and above on medical advice. Orkambi will be extended to patients aged between 2 and 5.
Orkambi has been available to older patients and it will now be available to the younger patients. Symdeko has not been available in Australia.
“All up, we expect up to 1400 patients to benefit from new or improved medicines,” Mr Hunt said.
Nettie Burke, CEO of Cystic Fibrosis Australia, welcomed the news.
“We believe that every Australian has the right to have a healthy life and a regular life and a long life, and drugs like Orkambi and Symdeko do just that,” she said.
“This will give people with CF [cystic fibrosis] two extra decades of life, and that is a great celebration.”