Britain’s Government Health System Rules $5 a Day Too Much for Drug to Battle Alzheimer’s

I can’t improve on Tom Blumer’s post about Britain’s National Health Service’s ruling denying Aricept to people with mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s — to save money.

In a post last year, I discussed Britain’s denial of the drug Herceptin — a standard treatment here in the USA — for cancer treatment in a young woman, Claire McDonnell, with children. In this Daily Mirror article, Mrs. McDonnell’s eight-year-old daughter writes to the politician in charge of health care in Britain to beg her to allow Herceptin for her 33-year-old mother.

(Public and legal pressure since then has forced the NHS to back down on Herceptin, including for Mrs. McDonnell. Said a British woman on the victory: “The most dreadful thing in the world is being told there is a drug but you cannot have it – especially when you have got children.”)

In this post, I wrote about a British man who was denied a potentially-life saving cancer drug because he lived in the wrong part of Britain. This post describes a kind of Culloden-in-reverse: The Scots far better than the English when it comes to qualifying for drugs under the NHS.

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