“New treatment fund isn’t a new treatment fund at all”, says Angela Burns AM

Welsh Conservatives’ spokesperson for health has today raised serious concerns about the £80m new treatment fund – launched today by the Welsh Government – which she says “isn’t new at all”.

Angela Burns AM, Welsh Conservative Shadow Secretary for Health, said that the fund merely enables patients expedite the process of accessing drugs that have already been approved by NICE.

Speaking outside the Assembly Chamber, Angela Burns AM said: “If you delve into the detail of this new treatment fund, it isn’t a new treatment fund at all.

“In fact, the fund merely enables patients to get access to pre-approved drugs in a slightly quicker way, which does not meet the stated aims of Welsh Labour’s election promise.

“The burning issue of how desperately ill patients can apply for drugs which do not fall under this new treatment fund, or via the individual patient funding request route – such as the cystic fibrosis drug Orkambi – remains unanswered.

“Nor is there evidence to support the Cabinet Secretary’s boast that the treatment fund is better than those that exist in Scotland and England, and I would welcome more information on what performance indicators he has in place to ensure that this assertion stands up to scrutiny.

“We have yet to receive any assurances that the fund will cater for the care and infrastructure around the drugs, such as monitoring and follow-up appointments. It must be ensured that the whole patient journey is covered and not just the start of it.

“It is my earnest wish that today’s announcement isn’t just more smoke and mirrors. For the sake of patients across Wales who are running out of options and looking to the Cabinet Secretary for hope, he must address these concerns.”


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