NHS to fast-track access to cannabis-based medicine for children with severe epilepsy
Thousands of people, including children with severe epilepsy will have access to a potentially life changing, seizure preventing cannabis-based treatment on the NHS from the New Year.
Doctors will be able to prescribe Epidyolex with clobazam for eligible children with two types of severe epilepsy which can cause multiple seizures a day – Lennox Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.
Following an NHS England agreement with GW Pharma, NICE has been able to recommend the treatment, with access fast tracked and available from 6 January.
Clinical trials have shown the treatment could reduce the number of seizures by up to 40% in some children when used in combination with clobazam. Around 2,000 people could benefit from this new treatment every year.
Simon Stevens, NHS chief executive, said: “The NHS is committed, through the Long Term Plan, to improving the lives of all those affected by rare diseases.
“Living with or caring for someone with severe epilepsy is exceptionally challenging, especially as there are so few treatments available for the rare forms of the condition.
“Thousands of people including children will now have access to this treatment, which has the potential to make a real difference.”
NHS England published earlier this year a review aimed at assessing the barriers to prescribing cannabis-based medicinal products where it is safe and clinically appropriate. Work has started with the Department of Health and Social Care and other partners to implement the recommendations – and a letter to the NHS to clarify the procedure for prescribing unlicensed cannabis-based products where there is an unmet need and it is clinically appropriate will be issued shortly.
Latest News from
Risk of death from unintended administration of sodium nitrite07/08/2020 09:15:00
A National Patient Safety Alert has been issued on the risk of death from unintended administration of sodium nitrite.
NHS recruitment drive to help tackle loneliness and improve lives06/08/2020 09:15:00
The NHS is recruiting a growing army of social prescribing link workers to combat loneliness and isolation fuelled by coronavirus.
NHS Rolls Out ‘Covid-friendly’ Cancer Treatments04/08/2020 09:15:00
‘Covid-friendly’ cancer treatments that are safer for patients during the pandemic will be expanded and extended through a £160 million initiative, NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens yesterday announced.
Chair Appointed To Lead NHS Drive To Reduce Health Inequalities29/07/2020 14:15:00
A longstanding health leader and advocate on inequalities has been chosen to head up the health service’s major new work programme into the impact of race and ethnicity on people’s health, NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens yesterday announced at NHS England and NHS Improvement’s public board meeting.
Fast online access to world leading NHS weight loss advice27/07/2020 14:15:00
People who are at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes will be fast-tracked into the flagship Healthier You NHS Diabetes Prevention programme, Chief Executive Sir Simon Stevens yesterday announced.
Childcare costs for doctors to be covered in drive to boost GP numbers27/07/2020 13:43:00
The NHS has launched a new scheme to encourage hundreds more doctors to return to general practice by offering help towards the costs of caring for children or family members.
New NHS ‘Exemplars’ to help close inequality gap for people with a learning disability17/07/2020 09:15:00
The NHS yesterday called on local NHS organisations across the country to become learning disability ‘Exemplars’ to help drive forward improvements in care putting the health of people with a learning disability firmly on the agenda.
NHS to launch ground breaking online COVID-19 rehab service06/07/2020 16:15:00
Tens of thousands of people who are suffering long-term effects of coronavirus will benefit from a revolutionary on-demand recovery service, the head of the NHS yesterday announced.