Government joins fight against advanced prostate cancer
Thousands of Australian men and their loved ones are breathing a collective sigh of relief today at news the Federal Government will list advanced prostate cancer therapy ZYTIGA® (abiraterone acetate) on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).
Approved for use in Australia in early 2012 for men who have exhausted other treatment options, ZYTIGA is considered the biggest breakthrough in the treatment of advanced prostate cancer in the past decade.
“This is fantastic news for the prostate cancer community. Affordable access to therapy at all stages of the condition is vital and the Minister’s decision to include the therapy on the PBS highlights her commitment to all Australians touched by prostate cancer,” said Dr Anthony Lowe, CEO Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia.
“With 3,300 lives claimed by prostate cancer every year, the availability of new treatments for advanced prostate cancer is long overdue,” he added.
ZYTIGA will be available on the PBS from 1 August 2013 for the treatment, in combination with prednisone or prednisolone, of castration resistant metastatic carcinoma of the prostate in a patient who has failed treatment with docetaxel (chemotherapy).
Advanced prostate cancer – where cancer cells have spread beyond the prostate – is the second most common cause of cancer deaths in Australian men.1 The number of lives lost to the disease has increased by 20 per cent in the last decade.2
“We look forward to seeing increased access to new therapies for even more patients with advanced prostate cancer in the near future,” Dr Lowe concluded.
- Advanced Prostate Cancer, A guide for men and their families. Prepared by the Australian Cancer Network and Australian Prostate Cancer Collaboration. Available at:http://www.cancer.org.au/content/pdf/HealthProfessionals/ClinicalGuidelines/Advanced_Prostate_Cancer_Guide_2009_BOOKMARKS.pdf
- Australian Bureau of Statistics. Causes of Death Australia.http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/0/6BAD463E482C6970CA2579C6000F6AF7?opendocument