Breast cancer drug Kadcyla at risk in England is approved in Scotland

Siobhan Robbins, West of England Correspondent

A breast cancer drug which could shortly be withdrawn in England has been approved for use on the NHS in Scotland.

Kadcyla can extend the lives of women dying from an aggressive form of breast cancer.

Campaigners claim more than a hundred women a year could benefit from the drug in Scotland.

Director for Breast Cancer Now in Scotland, Mary Allison, told Sky News: "NICE are considering Kadcyla at the moment for England and we certainly hope it won't be a postcode lottery in the UK.

"We hope that the deal that the Scottish Medicines Consortium and Roche have reached here in Scotland can be reached with other medicine systems in other parts of the UK."

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More than 13,000 women signed a petition calling for Kadcyla to be made routinely available.

Among them is single mother, Alison Tait, who has incurable secondary breast cancer.

She believes the decision will change lives. "The benefits will be fantastic," she said.

"I've heard stories about how other women have lived many years using Kadcyla and there's absolutely no reason why I shouldn't be one of those."

Breast Cancer is responsible for a thousand deaths a year in Scotland; 4,600 women are diagnosed with the disease annually.

Scottish Health Secretary Shona Robison said the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC), the body which approves drugs for use by the health service, had made a "good decision" in permitting Kadcyla.

Despite the benefits, the drug could be withdrawn in England due to the cost.

Health watchdog, NICE, told Sky News that the final decision would be made by the summer.

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