Give People with Lupus Treatment Options - Recommend Benlysta(R) for Coverage Now

Benlysta(R) is the first treatment developed specifically for lupus since the disease was identified in the mid-1800's. This treatment represents a ray of hope that new safe, effective and tolerable treatments can be developed for the more than five million people around the world living with lupus.

The United Kingdom's (UK) National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) recently released its preliminary recommendation to NOT cover the cost of Benlysta(R) through the National Health Service.Their preliminary recommendation could have a devastating international impact on the survival of this important new treatment, and it may have a chilling effect on the future development of new lupus drugs thereby denying physicians and patients appropriate treatment options. 

Join us in our call to action by urging NICE to recommend that the United Kingdom's National Health Service provide coverage of Benlysta(R).
We, the undersigned, band together to urge the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence's (NICE) to reverse their preliminary recommendation that Benlysta, a new safe and effective treatment for systemic lupus erythematosus, not be covered through the National Health Service.  Your preliminary recommendation could have a devastating international impact on the survival of this important new treatment, and it may have a chilling effect on the future development of new lupus drugs thereby denying physicians and patients appropriate treatment options.  

Lupus is a prototypical autoimmune disease that affects more than five million people worldwide.  For more than a half century, people with lupus and their doctors have expressed a desire for more tolerable and safe alternatives to the damaging therapies currently available.

A large-scale international study found that half of the physical damage experienced by lupus patients was the result of existing therapies used to manage their disease. The short-term lower costs of existing drugs mask the simple fact that their significant side effects are associated with an egregious rise in disabilities, hospitalizations and extreme long-term medical expenditures.  This is without even considering the human and economic toll on families and other caregivers as patients battle this chronic lifelong illness with the toxic and inadequate available treatments.

Therefore, we call on NICE to recommend the National Health Service provide coverage of Benlysta.
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