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New Zealand To Cover Herceptin Breast Cancer Drug Despite Cost

This article was originally published in PharmAsia News

Executive Summary

Despite criticism the move would set a dangerous precedent, New Zealand's government said a 12-month course of a key breast cancer drug would be covered by the national health plan. The decision to cover Genentech's Herceptin (trastuzumab) would make the $109,000-a-year drug available to an estimated 300 women who get the disease every year. The opposition party said the action was tantamount to politicizing drug purchasing, since the nation's drug-buying agency had ruled against coverage. In New Zealand, about 40 new drugs are to be available within two years, each costing about as much as Herceptin. (Click here for more
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