Preliminary trial results show that by taking the PARP inhibitor Niraparib, women with ovarian cancer can keep the disease at bay for an average of six months longer than placebo treatments, while some women were still in remission more than three years later.
Previously, only women with recurrent ovarian cancer had access to the drug, but now in England, women will have access to the drug from the start of their treatment. The move by the UK heralds the ready availability of an effective ovarian cancer drug treatment in a treatment landscape that has not shifted or been enhanced for many decades.
Last year, the OCRF commissioned the State of the Nation – Ovarian Cancer: Research Audit. The report found that between now and 2035, nearly 14,000 Australian women are expected to die from ovarian cancer. Finding better and more personalised treatments and establishing a national approach to clinical best practice could save more than 680 of those women. This is a critical priority for researchers, clinicians and women with ovarian cancer. Treatment has moved from an historical “one size fits all” model of care to a more individualised approach but this work has only just begun.
Australian women now have an opportunity to get ready and affordable access to Niraparib. The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) is meeting in March to discuss whether to recommend the listing of Niraparib on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). The closing date for consumer comments is 10 February 2021. Comments are welcome if you are a patient, carer, member of the public, health professional, or member of a consumer interest group.
contribute to our submission
The OCRF will be making a submission to the PBAC, given the strong and independent findings of our State of the Nation report. We need to invest in researching better treatment options and to readily adopt approaches that have produced positive results.
We urge all our supporters to advocate for the listing of Niraparib on the PBS – by either preparing their own submission (PBAC guidelines are available on the PBAC website) or by contributing to the OCRF submission in any way they feel comfortable with. If you wish to contribute or to find out more information, please contact the OCRF by email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
You may wish to include your thoughts on why the listing of Niraparib on the PBS is important to you, and what difference this could make to your own situation or that of someone you know or are caring for.
Send your contribution