19 November 2009

Not So Nice Bargaining

As far as chemical processes go, on the basis of the scheme above, the preparation of sorafenib (a component of Nexavar) looks quite straightforward. The product should be available for a relatively low cost.

As for the price ... that appears to be another matter.

"Nice's decision not to approve the liver cancer drug Nexavar is painful but necessary" according to The Telegraph, which goes on to say,

"Data submitted to Nice shows that supplying the drug to the 600 to 700 people with advanced liver cancer would cost a total of £7.7m.

That would give those people the chance of an extra precious few months and admittedly some have lived for six months or longer on Nexavar. But the data shows that the median survival benefit is 2.8 months, and that means that for those who may gain six months, some will gain a lot less or nothing at all.

The dosage is 4 x 0.2 g = 0.8 g per day, for 3 months (90 x 0.8 g = 72 g) for 600 people (72 g x 600 = 43.2 kg).

The price of the drug, on the basis of those figures is GB pound 7.7 million divided by 43,200 g = GB pound 178.24 per gram.

As for the cost, in the absence of doing the calculation (perhaps I should), I'd guess that it would be substantially cheaper than the figure given above.

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