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Bone Diseases: Medical Treatments

Volume 472: debated on Wednesday 5 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make it his policy to issue guidance on the administering of enbrel and humira to people diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis. (191179)

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has received two appeals against its final appraisal determination on adalimumab (brand name Humira), etanercept (brand name Enbrel) and infliximab for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis. Final guidance will not be published until the appeals have been heard.

Funding for licensed treatments should not be withheld because guidance from NICE is unavailable. In December 2006, we issued refreshed good practice guidance which asks national health service bodies to continue with local arrangements for the managed introduction of new technologies where guidance from NICE is not available at the time the treatment or technology first becomes available.