European disparities in access to cancer drugs
New research has highlighted stark disparities in access to the latest cancer drugs across European Union nations, according to data presented at the 33rd Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Stockholm.
While countries like France, Spain, Austria and Switzerland have tended to introduce the new drugs quickly, researchers say, others such as the UK and more recent EU entrants bring them in more slowly.
Dr Nils Wilking from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden gathered data on the sales of newer drugs per inhabitant of each country provided by pharmaceutical industry consultants IMS Health. His group’s focus was on the uptake of newer ’targeted‘ drugs over the past 10 years in 27 countries.
Overall, they found substantial variation between countries, both in terms of speed and uptake of newer cancer drugs, and the level of usage of the drugs.
“Of the major western EU countries, the UK tends to come out both low and slow with a few exceptions,” Dr Wilking said. “Overall, Austria, Switzerland and France bring the new drugs out more quickly. France also has an especially high general uptake of most new drugs. Spain is somewhat lower and slower but was a ’leader‘ in the early part of the 2000s.”
The cost of the newer drugs is probably the major barrier to access, Dr. Wilking said. “To some extent it could also relate to the introduction of more ’targeted‘ drugs that tend to be more complex to understand and, in some cases, have smaller studies to support their approval.”
The impact of this disparity on the health of Europe’s cancer patients is hard to say with certainty, Dr Wilking said. “It is a complicated area as the epidemiological data lags so much behind. We need much better epidemiological data in order to evaluate the link between access to cancer drugs and outcome.”
Access to drugs is not the only factor involved in improving cancer outcomes, he added. “Patients need to have full access to the most innovative technologies in prevention, screening, surgery, radiotherapy and drugs.”
Vanessa Pavinato | alfa
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...