Meriden MP calls on health secretary to help Dorridge mum's plight - The Solihull Observer

Meriden MP calls on health secretary to help Dorridge mum's plight

Solihull Editorial 31st Oct, 2023   0

MERIDEN MP, Saqib Bhatti, has called on the health secretary to urgently look into making a life-saving cancer drug available to all on the NHS.

This comes after Dorridge mum Elaine Lynch was told she had the ‘wrong type of cancer’ to be given Enhertu despite doctors saying it was the drug she needed to treat her lung cancer.

Following her cancer diagnosis in 2021 a biopsy revealed Elaine had the HER2 mutation – which is typically found in breast cancer patients.

The 59-year-old said: “Even though this drug was readily available from the hospital pharmacy they could not let me have it because it was only licensed for use in breast cancer.

“Imagine being told that someone has the drug you need but you can’t have it because you have the wrong type of cancer.

“Cancer is cancer and the fact that this drug was readily available in the hospital when I needed it but I wasn’t allowed to be given it was really shocking to me.

“I can be sitting in the chemo centre with a drip in my arm for which I am paying an extortionate amount and the woman next to me can be receiving the same chemo on the NHS. How is this fair?”

A failed attempt from her medical team to the drugs company calling for Elaine to be given the drug on the NHS saw Elaine faced with no other option than to fund it herself, which costs up to £9,040 every three weeks.

Mr Bhatti has called for Enhertu to be made available to Elaine Lynch follows his presentation of a petition on her behalf calling for The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to authorise the use of the drug Enhertu for NHS cancer treatment among patients with the HER2 mutation.

This came after Elaine’s partner, Chris Goodwin, launching an online petition on NICE to license Enhertu to be used in lung cancer patients.

The Minister for Health, Will Quince, emphasised his sympathy for Elaine and others in her position and agreed to meet with Mr Bhatti to see what could be done to make this drug available on the NHS.

The minister also noted that NICE is an independent body with a strict and robust process for repurposing drugs and clinical trials which must be adhered to.

Mr Bhatti said: “I am grateful that the Minister for Health has agreed to meet with me to discuss ways to allow Elaine access to the lifesaving drug Enhertu.

“Making sure that my constituent’s healthcare needs are met is one of my main priorities and I will continue to champion Elaine’s cause.”


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