9 Dec 2013

Pharmac to fund drug for rare blood disorder

9:55 am on 9 December 2013

About 40 patients a year are expected to benefit from new Pharmac funding for a rare disorder.

The government drug-funding agency will pay for a drug to treat the rare bleeding condition idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP).

It will be one of the most expensive treatments Pharmac will fund.

The funding from which starts on 1 Jan 2014 is expected to cost about $36,000 a year for each patient.

ITP is most often diagnosed in children between two and ten years old.

The new funding will be for people who have severe cases of the illness and who have already tried other treatments.

Pharmac says there was a compelling case for funding because it should mean fewer hospital admissions and a better quality of life for people with the condition.