New listing for myeloma drug
Darzalex is now on the PBS, saving some blood cancer patients tens of thousands of dollars a year.
Darzalex is a drug used to treat multiple myeloma cancer, which causes cancerous plasma cells to build up in bone marrow, leaving no room for healthy blood cells.
Around 20,000 Australians are currently living with multiple myeloma, which kills about 1,000 people each year.
With the new treatment listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) from January 1, the cost of the drug should come down from about $160,000 a year to just $480. Concession card holders will pay less.
Darzalex binds to cancerous plasma cells, where it can either destroy them directly or help the immune system identify and kill them.
The drug will be listed on the PBS as a second-line treatment for patients who relapse.