Access to immunotherapy update

As you may be aware from previous issues of our magazine, first line immunotherapy (nivolumab and ipilimumab) for the treatment of mesothelioma is currently under consideration by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) following the results of the CHECKMATE 743 study.

The decision about whether this treatment would be recommended and therefore available on the NHS was expected at the end of April. Unfortunately, NICE has put this on hold to allow for commercial negotiations to take place.

A single immunotherapy has been available on the NHS for second line treatment of mesothelioma since summer 2020 as part of a response to Covid19. This is kept under regular review and we anticipate that it will be reviewed again in June. It is unclear whether this access will continue and whether it will be affected by the outcome of the NICE appraisal for first line treatment. We understand that people being treated with nivolumab will be able to continue the treatment as long as it is effective, even if it withdrawn.

We will update through our social media channels on Facebook and Twitter when we receive any more information.

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