12 July 2021

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

“The decision to approve Phesgo1 for use on Scotland’s NHS means hundreds of women in Scotland will now benefit from a quicker and kinder treatment method; from today, women with HER2 positive breast cancer, right across the UK, will have equal access.

“This more efficient treatment method will both reduce the time patients spend in hospital and free up precious time for healthcare professionals – and at a critical time with the NHS continuing to face unparalleled pressures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Trastuzumab and pertuzumab are two of the greatest advances achieved in breast cancer treatment over recent decades. That patients will now be able to have both treatments in one injection is a further step in ensuring the best possible quality of life for people with breast cancer.

“We encourage women to discuss their breast cancer treatment options with their healthcare team, and they can also speak to our expert nurses by calling our free Helpline on 0808 800 6000.”

ENDS

1 Phesgo is a fixed-dose combination of pertuzumab (Perjeta) and trastuzumab (Herceptin) that is administered by injection, and which can be given with intravenous chemotherapy. This new administration method by injection cuts the treatment time compared with when the drugs are delivered by separate intravenous infusions (IV). This treatment method was made available in England, Northern Ireland and Wales in April 2021.

People already receiving pertuzumab and trastuzumab in combination with chemotherapy may now receive Phesgo, in addition to new patients. People with HER2 positive breast cancer may be given Phesgo in line with previous SMC advice for pertuzumab and trastuzumab:  

  • To treat early breast cancer – either as a neoadjuvant or adjuvant treatment
  • To treat secondary breast cancer

A phase 3 study (FeDeriCa) investigated the safety and efficacy of the fixed-dose combination of pertuzumab and trastuzumab (Phesgo) for subcutaneous administration in combination with chemotherapy. Results showed that Phesgo was non-inferior to intravenous pertuzumab and trastuzumab and demonstrated comparable efficacy and safety.