Melbourne, August 2010: Hundreds of cancer patients around Australia have had free and subsidised access to a world leading cancer drug, under a compassionate program administered by the family-owned bio-pharmaceutical company which markets the treatment in Australia.
Specialised Therapeutics Australia has enabled more than 240 patients to access Abraxane ® (nanoparticle albumin-bound paclitaxel), a novel type of chemotherapy, via its compassionate program.
These patients have been affected by various types of cancers, including pancreatic and lung cancer. They have been selected by their oncologists after failure of other treatments where it’s believed they could potentially benefit from Abraxane chemotherapy.
Abraxane is currently approved and reimbursed via the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) for patients with metastatic breast cancer after failure of prior therapy.
In patients with metastatic breast cancer, Abraxane has been shown to prolong patient survival times with overall fewer side effects compared to solvent-based paclitaxel.1-2
Specialised Therapeutics Australia Chief Executive Officer Mr Carlo Montagner, said the compassionate program was designed to provide patient access to a potentially valuable therapy when few treatment options remain.
“We are exceptionally proud of our programs” he said.
“Since February last year, well over $1 million worth of Abraxane has been provided free of charge to patients with cancer across a number of disease types.
Many medical oncologists have reported positive outcomes with their patients, so we are pleased to have made Abraxane available for these patients when requested.
“We hope in the future to have approval and government reimbursement for several different types of cancer under investigation, if the Phase III data are positive”.