Hundreds of children in England are set to benefit from a treatment for cystic fibrosis – Kaftrio, after the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) confirmed an extension to its licence.
With the licence extension, more than 1,300 children in England with cystic fibrosis, aged six to 11, are newly eligible for this treatment, which improves lung function and improves overall quality of life of patients.
Earlier, Kaftrio was only licensed for those aged 12 and above.
British patients were the first in Europe to benefit from Kaftrio, when NHS England secured a landmark deal in June 2020.
NHS chief executive Amanda Pritchard said: “Since NHS staff delivered one of the fastest rollouts of Kaftrio in the world just over a year ago, the lives of thousands of patients with cystic fibrosis have been transformed.
“Innovative treatments like Kaftrio are life-changing for patients and their families, and that is why the NHS has done all it can since we secured the deal for Kaftrio to ensure patients benefit as soon as possible.
She added that the move was in line with the NHS Long Term Plan and its commitment to use latest cutting-edge treatments and therapies to save and improve patients’ lives.
Commending the NHS efforts, health and social care secretary Sajid Javid said: “I’m delighted that hundreds more children will receive this life-changing cystic fibrosis drug, which can give them a better quality of life for longer.”
Cystic fibrosis is a progressive, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and reduces the ability to breathe over time.
Around 8,000 people in England are living with the ailment, which is the second highest proportion in the world.