Good news for New Zealanders with advanced hormone receptor positive HER2 negative breast cancer. From 1st July Pharmac will fund Kisqali (ribociclib) for those who haven’t previously had funded access to Ibrance (palbociclib). BCAC asked Novartis to provide Kisqali free to patients until Pharmac funding kicks in and they agreed. So, if you’re starting or continuing on Kisqali you won’t have to pay medicine costs from now onwards. You’ll need to visit a private oncology clinic and pay their fees until July, but after that you can choose to have Kisqali administered for free in a public cancer treatment centre.

Not so great is that New Zealand patients have had to wait six years longer than Australians in accessing ribociclib for this type of cancer. It was funded in Australia in 2018. 

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