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Good news / bad news – Pharmac’s new drug deal a bitter pill for 160 long-suffering patients

Helen Glenny 0 500
Pharmac’s decision to fund pertuzumab (trade name Perjeta) from January 2017 for New Zealanders with advanced (metastatic) HER2+ breast cancer will be good news for patients diagnosed from the New Year onwards, but is a bitter pill for the 160 Kiwis who have been deprived of this significantly life-extending drug so far and now appear to be shut out of the new agreement.

The Unexpected Benefits of Volunteering

Helen Glenny 0 1203

Volunteers are the lifeblood of non-profit organisations. Each year, over 10,000 people donate their time to the NZBCF, whether it’s out on the streets, on the road, or in our office.

There’s no doubt that these volunteers enjoy themselves. Doing good, after all, makes people feel good. But that’s not the only benefit of volunteering. Researchers have found that giving up your time for a cause could actually help you live longer. 



Advanced Breast Cancer Patients Deserve a Slice of Pharmac's $124 Million Funding Boost

Helen Glenny 0 1666

The Government’s 2016 budget, released yesterday, gave Pharmac a much-needed funding boost. The government has committed $124 million over four years, bumping Pharmac’s annual budget up to $850 million – the highest it’s ever been.

But in New Zealand, advanced breast cancer patients are lacking treatment options. This is particularly hard to stomach when you consider the fact that life-extending treatment options exist, and are publicly funded for women with breast cancer in Australia and the UK. 

What about the other breast?

Helen Glenny 0 3127

Over the last 20 years the number of preventative breast cancer surgeries has increased; surgeries intended to reduce a woman’s risk of getting the disease.

But are these surgeries actually preventing anything? And do the negative effects of the surgery outweigh the benefits?


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