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Published on 12 September 2007

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MS drug gains Scotland approval

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Tysabri® (natalizumab) can now be used for patients in Scotland with highly active relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS), the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has announced.

All NHS health boards in Scotland are now obliged to consider the SMC’s advice and ensure that Tysabri is made available to meet people’s clinical needs.

Similar guidance was issued for England and Wales by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) last month.

The drug, made by Biogen Idec and Elan, is also licensed by the FDA.

Some 14,000 MS patients worldwide are currently receiving the treatment.

Dr Belinda Weller, from Edinburgh’s Western General Hospital, said: “This decision offers real hope of a more active and fulfilled life to MS patients in Scotland with highly active relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis.

“Access to appropriate therapy is particularly vital in Scotland as we have the highest number of people with MS per capita in the world.

“Our priority now must be to ensure that treatment is made available to those with the most highly active form of the disease.”

Copyright © PA Business 2007

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