The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence’s decision to review its guidance on vascular disease for the antiplatelet drugs clopidogrel (Plavix) and dipyridamole has been welcomed by two of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies.
NICE, originally planned to defer review of the guidance until November 2010, but during a recent consultation process a number of organisations highlighted the pressing need for an earlier review.
The body has now agreed to move the review forward, a decision which has been backed by sanofi-aventis and Bristol-Myers Squibb in a statement.
“There is important new evidence available, particularly in the area of stroke, which means that the existing guidance needs to be re-assessed,” said Nigel Brooksby, managing director of sanofi-aventis in the UK. “We now have the opportunity to ensure the guidance is kept up to date and in line with new evidence.”
Richard Marsh, director of external affairs and market access at Bristol-Myers Squibb, added: “The current guidance looks at patients in isolation. However, according to the REACH registry (the largest registry of 68,000 patients with cardiovascular disease around the world), one in six of these patients have multivascular disease and are at even higher risk of further events.
“We look forward to participating in this review with NICE as it gives us the opportunity to ensure these patients treatment needs are addressed and that they are offered the most effective treatments.”
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