What needed to change
For the many women living with secondary breast cancer, what matters most is spending as much good quality time as they can with those they love. Women with incurable breast cancer simply want more time to live. Perjeta is a life changing drug with extraordinary benefits, giving on average nearly 16 extra months of life.
Although Perjeta was already available for routine use in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, it had been rejected for use in Scotland three times by the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC). Perjeta drug manufacturer Roche had no plans to re-submit an application to the SMC.
What you helped us do
It was time to end this injustice. So, in May 2018 we launched our Perjeta Now campaign.
We asked you to sign our petition calling on the SMC, Roche and the Scottish Government to urgently work together to ensure Scottish women would be able to routinely access Perjeta.
Women like Jen Hardy and Suzanne Hickling told us their stories and, because of them, our campaign attracted the attention of politicians and the media. Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) brought it to the attention of decision makers – including the First Minister, and the campaign made it onto the front pages of the Daily Record.
12, 203 supporters signed our petition which was hand-delivered to the SMC, Roche and the Scottish Government in November 2018.
On 4 December 2018, campaigners Suzanne and Alison alongside Breast Cancer Now, attended the SMC’s discussions on Perjeta. The Committee Chair began the meeting explaining to members that they had received a petition with over 12,000 signatures calling on them to make the drug available.
What we achieved together
Campaigns, like this one, show that we do have the power to make change; in January 2019, the SMC announced its decision to approve Perjeta for routine use in Scotland. This treatment is only available thanks to supporters like you.
We will continue to work to ensure effective breast cancer drugs can reach patients on the NHS. This includes making sure the patient voice is heard during the assessment of treatments by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and the Scottish Medicine Consortium (SMC). If you want to be part of future campaigns supporting breast cancer patients access the drugs they need to live well, sign-up to receive our updates. You’ll be the first to hear about ways to take action to make things better for people affected by breast cancer.