Costly cancer drugs thrown out because of one-size-fits-all

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Costly cancer drugs thrown out because of one-size-fits-all

Post by oneh2obabe »

Now is the time the government to follow the lead of the UK ... tell drug manufacturers they must produce some cancer medications in packaging that reduces waste if they wanted to be considered in the bidding process for which drugs it will purchase.

The health-care system is wasting millions of dollars by buying cancer medications that are thrown out because of the way they are packaged by drug makers — in one-size-fits-all vials that hold too much for most patients, a study found.

"It's outrageous," said drug policy researcher Alan Cassels, who is familiar with the study.

"We have so many demands on our health-care dollars for drugs and doctors and hospitals and so on. So, to see this kind of waste is appalling."

The waste costs as much as $102 million over a three-year period, according to the study published two years ago in the medical journal Cancer.

"What people don't realize is that wastage is actually a real cost that's borne by the provinces or hospitals [and] ultimately the taxpayers," said Dr. Matthew Cheung, a senior co-author of the study and a hematologist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto.

The drugs are administered in very specific doses based on a patient's weight and/or height, then, because of concerns about possible infection from reusing the same vial, nurses discard the rest. ... -1.5474471
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