The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has
been bombarded by almost 8,000 objections to its call for the NHS
to stop prescribing four Alzheimer’s drugs on cost grounds,
writes Mithran Samuel.
The massive negative response to its consultation, which dwarfs
those who responded in favour, puts considerable pressure on the
institute to reverse its draft guidance, especially given
Department of Health scepticism.
An Alzheimer’s Society spokesperson said: “It shows
the strength of public feeling that drug treatments for
Alzheimer’s that work should be made available regardless of
Nice’s appraisal committee met to consider the proposal
last week and will make its final recommendation in the week
beginning 18 July.
Its draft guidance on donepezil, galantamine, memantine and
rivastigmine has come under severe criticism from a number of
bodies, and the DoH echoed a number of their concerns in its own
It questioned whether Nice had compared drug costs to those of
non-drug treatments and the weight given to the value patients
placed on the treatments.