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Pfizer Inc. (PFE)’s Breast Cancer Drug Too Expensive: Says NICE

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has declared the latest breast cancer drug too expensive to justify its use. The country’s healthcare cost-effectiveness watchdog says that Ibrance from Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE), which is also known as palbociclib, is not affordable to Britain’s state-run health service.

The medicine is likely to offer incredible improvement in overall survival but even so, its cost of 2,950 pounds ($3,700) per 28 days is a tall order for many.

It was a big win for the U.S. drugmaker to have Ibrance endorsed by the European Union given that it’s the company’s best-selling breast cancer drug. However, in countering its usefulness, a statement from the director of NICE’s center for health technology assessment, Carole Longson reads, “Even when allowing for these potential benefits, it was still not enough to make palbociclib cost-effective at its current price.”

Pfizer PFE pharmaceutical stock

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What Next For The Celebrated Drugmaker?

This is one of the most traumatizing moments for Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) and more so because it has attained a record of success against its rivals. The sale of Ibrance was approved in February 2015 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. According to Thomson Reuters data, analysts had forecast some $2.1 billion in 2016 sales. The drug was in competition with a rival treatment from Novartis AG (ADR) (NYSE:NVS), the ribociclib. Both drugs are meant to be used in combination with existing drugs in the treatment of tumors growing in response to oestrogen.

The company is not taking kindly the decision by NICE. Pfizer UK’s oncology head David Montgomery says that the decision should not be stamped as final. He further outlines the company’s willingness to try and find an amicable solution to making the drug available.

Pfizer’s Disappointing Profit Results For The Fourth Quarter

The maker of Viagra and pain treatment Lyrica had predicted slightly better results in an effort to cap a difficult 2016. However, this was not to be, as its earnings were less than what analysts had expected.

All this comes at a time when U.S president Donald Trump is pushing big drugmakers to lower drug prices, including previously meeting executives of some of the big drugmakers to discuss the issue. Meanwhile, Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) shares closed at $31.73 on Thursday, witnessing an increase of $0.06 or 0.19%.

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Note: This article is written by Andy Parker and originally published at Market Exclusive.

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