Here we provide links some of the recent media coverage about issues affecting women with breast cancer. We give full credit to the source of every story.

If any of the links don't work for you, copy and paste the headline into or your preferred Internet browser.


Breast cancer medicines advocates including BCAC Chair Libby Burgess, and Wiki and Malcolm Mulholland, are quoted in this Stuff article, welcoming the funding of Ibrance for all who need it.


Metavivor Wiki Mulholland tells the NZ Herald how much the funding of Ibrance (palbociclib) for advanced breast cancer means to her and her fellow Metavivors. PHARMAC announced 15 January 2020 that Ibrance will be funded by PHARMAC from 1 April 2020. Manufacturer Pfizer will provide Ibrance free of charge from now until April.

PHARMAC media release:

PHARMAC has announced it will go out for funding proposals for fulvestrant (Faslodex) for breast cancer. PHARMAC also called for tenders for a CDK 4/6 inhibitor (palbociclib (Ibrance) or ribociclib (Kisqali)). Both are needed to extend the lives of women with advanced hormone-receptor (HR) positive HER2 negative breast cancer; 61% of women have this subtype of breast cancer and could benefit from these medicines.


A Medicines NZ report has shown NZ's abysmal rank in access to medicines funding. NZ also came last in pharmaceutical invesment.

NZ Herald:

PHARMAC has announced it will soon fund breast cancer cancer medicine trastuzumab emtansine (Kadcyla), which is needed for women with the second most common subtype, HER2 positive breast cancer. This is fantastic news!


Groups representing a range of health groups including BCAC explained the urgent need for funding for important medicines. A united voice was presented. Moving photos of BCAC members and representatives of other groups.

Southland Times:

New Zealander Blair Vining achieves a key goal - presenting his petition for a national cancer agency to Parliament. The petition was signed by more than 140,000 people and the agency has subsequently been established.

Breast cancer patients to have further NICE-approved drug combination option on Cancer Drugs Fund
NICE - the UK's National Institute for Health and Care Excellence:

Women in the UK with advanced hormone receptor positive breast cancer will now have another treatment option, i.e. the CDK4/6 inhibitor ribociclib (Kisqali) with fulvestrant. This will be given after previous treatment with endocrine therapy such as tamoxifen or an aromatase inhibitor. In the UK, over 80% of drugs are approved for funding by NICE compared to about 25% by PHARMAC in NZ, and the UK’s system is geared for fast decisions while NZ has no time limits. We need a NICE system in here!!

Keywords: NICE, UK, ribociclib, Kisqali


New Zealand’s Breast Special Interest Group (BSIG) has written to the Health Select Committee saying many breast cancer patients who can’t afford to pay for certain medicines themselves have shorter lives and poorer quality of life.

The committee is considering two petitions from Metavivors calling for the funding of two medicines for advanced breast cancer – Ibrance and Kadcyla.

The submission is signed by BSIG group chair Dr Reuben Broom and secretary Dr Sarah Barton, and calls for more money for  PHARMAC to give those with breast cancer more treatment options at affordable prices.


A long-awaited and much-campaigned-for national cancer action plan is set to soon be released for public consultation. The plan, which was committed to by Health Minister David Clark during the Cancer Care at a Crossroads Conference in January, aims to address disparities in Kiwis current access to fair and consistent cancer treatment around the country.