Scotland backs non-Hodgkin's lymphoma drug

The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has approved the use of the drug rituximab, for the treatment of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

The decision by the SMC to extend the use of rituximab enables physicians in Scotland to prescribe the drug, alongside their preferred chemotherapy regimen, as an initial treatment for patients with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The move comes after a series of clinical trials showed that combining rituximab with chemotherapy improved overall survival rates compared with chemotherapy alone.

Dr David Meiklejohn, consultant haematologist at the Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, said: ‘This SMC guidance is great news for this group of patients as it confirms the impressive survival benefit rituximab offers when added to a variety of chemotherapy regimens.’

NICE has already backed rituximab’s use in England and Wales.

sanjay.tanday@haymarket.com

Scottish Medicines Consortium

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