Vertex Expands Reimbursement Agreement with NHS England

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Vertex Pharmaceuticals has announced that it has extended its agreement with the National Health Service (NHS) England for its cystic fibrosis medicines.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals has announced, in a June 30, 2020 press release, that it has extended its agreement with the National Health Service (NHS) England for its cystic fibrosis medicines.

Under the agreement extension, NHS England patients with cystic fibrosis will have access to Kaftrio (ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor) in a combination regimen with Kalydeco (ivacaftor) 150 mg. This access represents the first in Europe if the European Commission approves the medicine. 

Additionally, the expanded access will enable NHS England patients to have reimbursed access to Vertex’s currently licensed medicines, Kalydeco (ivacaftor), Orkambi (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) and symkevi (tezacaftor/ivacaftor). The company has also agreed to submit Orkambi, Symkevi, and Kaftrio to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in an agreed upon timetable, which will allow for a period of real-world data collection on the medicines.

Reshma Kewalramani, CEO and president at Vertex, said, in the press release, “I’m pleased that NHS England has recognized the value of KAFTRIO, and that Vertex and NHS England have been able to work quickly, collaboratively, and flexibly to expand the existing reimbursement agreement to include the triple combination therapy in advance of the medicine being licensed. This will ensure that eligible patients in England will be among the first in Europe to benefit from access to this innovative medicine upon approval.”


Vertex will also be working closely with the health authorities in Wales, Northern Ireland, and Scotland, with the aim of providing a similar agreement in those regions of the United Kingdom.

Commenting on the agreement in a statement issued on June 30, 2020, Steve Bates OBE, CEO of the UK BioIndustry Association, said, “It’s fantastic to see the NHS and Vertex strike a lightning quick deal to enable NHS cystic fibrosis patients to access this important breakthrough therapy. The speed of this deal will not only improve the health outcomes of many people with cystic fibrosis, but also sends a clear message to the global life sciences industry that the UK is a great place to develop, trial, and launch innovative medicines.”

Sources: VertexBIA