Angry reaction to drug withdrawal

    Community care minister Stephen Ladyman will ask the National
    Institute for Clinical Excellence whether it has considered the
    wider social implications of the proposed withdrawal of four
    Alzheimer’s drugs, the Department of Health has confirmed.

    His intervention, which will flag up the benefits and costs of the
    drugs to carers as well as patients, comes as Nice revealed it had
    received more than 1,000 letters opposing the proposed withdrawal
    of Donepezil, Rivastigmine, Galantamine and Memantine since
    publishing its preliminary recommendations on the drugs earlier
    this month.

    Head of Alzheimer Scotland Jim Jackson said the charity was urging
    members to write to MSPs and NHS Quality Improvement Scotland on
    what could be a “disastrous” decision for Scotland.

    “We know these treatments are not perfect but they do help some
    people with early- to moderate-stage Alzheimer’s disease,” Jackson
    said.

    The Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Faculty of Old Age Psychiatry,
    which has more than 1,800 members, has drawn up a resolution saying
    that denying the drugs to people with Alzheimer’s would have a
    detrimental affect on their health and life.

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