Good First Step Forward for New Anticoagulant That Offers Patients with AF Better Stroke Prevention
CDR recommends newest treatment Eliquis - SSAO urges provinces to act quickly to reimburse
Ottawa, Ontario – April 3, 2013 – The Stroke Survivors Association of Ottawa welcomes the recent positive recommendation by the Common Drug Review (CDR) which recommends that provinces pay for Eliquis (apixaban) to prevent strokes in people with atrial fibrillation (AF), a heart disorder which greatly increases the risk of disabling and fatal strokes.
Eliquis is a new anti-blood clotting therapy which was approved by Health Canada in December 2012. This recommendation for Eliquis by the CDR represents an important milestone and is key for patients in order for them to have access to it through their provincial public drug plan.
“The positive CDR recommendation is a good first step in the process of getting access for patients, but it is not binding so we need provinces to move quickly to put the recommendation into effect for the benefit of patients,” said Janet McTaggart, Executive Director of the Stroke Survivors Association of Ottawa. “The more Canadians with AF who are on effective anti-blood clotting therapy, the fewer disabling and fatal strokes we will have. It’s vital the provinces move quickly.”
Disconnect with Canadian guidelines
“We are very concerned that the CDR is not urging provinces to pay for drugs to match the guidelines set by Canada’s cardiologists,” added Ms. McTaggart. “We understand there are cost considerations for drug budgets to pay for the new drugs, but every stroke we can prevent saves many thousands of dollars for the health system, not to mention the emotional and financial impact on patients and their families. These new treatments are our first major new hope in years to be able to reduce the number of preventable strokes in people with AF and we are optimistic that the provinces make decisions that are consistent with CCS recommendations.”
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