We comment on the outcome of today's debate on the Access to Medical Treatments (Innovation) Bill in the House of Commons
Friday 29 January 2016      Campaigns and policy
Nick Thomas-Symonds MP - UK Parliament
Nick Thomas-Symonds MP at the debate

Breast Cancer Now responds to today's debate on Access to Medical Treatments (Innovation) Bill

The Access to Medical Treatments (Innovation) Bill (AMTI) today (29 January 2016) had its Report stage in the House of Commons. During this debate, aspects of the Off-patent Drugs Bill - which fell last November at its second reading - were proposed for inclusion in the AMTI Bill by a group of cross-party MPs who had strongly supported the Off-patent Drugs Bill.

The Minister rejected these amendments for inclusion in the AMTI Bill but committed to exploring a number of these areas of policy (without legislation) in order to improve access to repurposed off-patent drugs.

Baroness Delyth Morgan, Chief Executive at Breast Cancer Now, said:

“We’re encouraged by the Minister’s willingness to make progress on access to repurposed off-patent drugs and the continued cross-party support that this issue has received.

“These commitments embrace, to some extent, the spirit of the Off-patent Drugs Bill that fell last November and we now look forward to working closely with the Department of Health on this issue going forward; there is still a long way to go to ensuring routine access for patients that could benefit from such drugs.

“The repurposing of drugs has a vital role to play in the future of cancer treatment, and, if the Government can now build on these commitments, the UK could become a world-leader in re-using off-patent drugs for new purposes.”

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