MS Ireland welcomes the news that two new treatments for relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) have been made available in Ireland. Tecfidera, an oral treatment and Plegridy, an injectable treatment, are both therapies for RRMS which will now be accessible through the HSE under the High Tech Drugs Scheme (HTDS) from the 1st March 2015.
Dr Chris McGuigan, Consultant Neurologist at St Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin said: “This is a positive development for people with MS in Ireland with two new products being approved for reimbursement. From a physician’s perspective this increases our armamentarium of treatments to help modify the disease course of MS in our patients. MS is a long-term condition and it's important that people with the condition have access to new and efficacious treatments.”
Ms Ava Battles, Chief Executive, MS Ireland said: "We are pleased that these two new treatments for MS will now be reimbursed, giving those living with MS here another important choice in treating their disease. MS Ireland believes people with MS should have access to all and any appropriate and licensed treatments that would improve or assist in the management of their condition. The MS community is very much looking forward to having access to these new treatment options.”
RRMS accounts for approximately eighty-five per cent of all initial diagnoses in MS. Approximately 250 people are diagnosed with MS every year in Ireland, with over 8,000 people directly affected by the condition. The majority of people with RRMS experience approximately one to two relapses per year. Around half of all relapses may leave people with lingering problems and disability may accumulate over time.