RCN hits out at anti-TNF limits

Nurse leaders have criticised NICE guidance limiting the use of anti-tumour necrosis factor (TNF) drugs because of their cost.

Last month NICE ruled that rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients who fail to respond to one TNF inhibitor should not be offered treatment with a different anti-TNF.

NICE says that allowing sequential use of the drugs could deny patients with other conditions funding for their treatment.

But RCN long-term conditions adviser Sue Thomas said that anti-TNF therapy could help people maintain their independence, and that denying them appropriate medication could mean that nursing and social care interventions were required.

She warned this will increase the cost of care management and asked that full costs, including those for nursing people with RA are considered.


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