The Minister of Health presented a new list of reimbursed drugs: “We have broken a record.” Who will benefit?

The Minister of Health presented a new list of reimbursed drugs: "We have broken a record."  Who will benefit?

At the press conference of the Ministry of Health, a new list of reimbursed drugs was presented. There is a lot of important information for Polish patients. This is the second list this year, but the first to include so many drug therapies.

Minister of Health Izabela Leszczyna and Deputy Minister of Health Maciej Miłkowski presented a draft of a new list of reimbursed drugs at today's press conference (March 14, 2024). It is to come into force in two weeks – from April 1, 2024.

“Today, together with Minister Miłkowski, we are presenting a new list of reimbursed drugs. This is the second list this year, but the first one so rich. We actually broke a record, we have 33 new drug therapies,” said the Minister of Health. Seven of these therapies are dedicated to oncological diseases, 26 new therapies are dedicated to non-oncological diseases (including 8 for rare diseases). The head of the Ministry of Health noted that what pleases her most about the new reimbursed drug therapies for rare diseases is the fact that the gene therapy drug program for children with SMA disease has been changed.

New reimbursed drugs manufactured in Poland

“From April 1, we are significantly increasing the possibilities and chances of treatment in gynecological diseases, gynecological oncology, cardiology and rare diseases,” said Minister of Health Izabela Leszczyna. She also referred to two drug lists. The first list concerns and includes medicines produced/manufactured in Poland or those for which an active substance manufactured in Poland was used. The second list includes drugs that are manufactured in Poland and use an active substance also manufactured in Poland.

The first list includes 7 Polish producers, 84 active substances and 329 products with individual GTIN codes. While on the second page there are 3 Polish producers, 11 active substances and 24 products. The Minister of Health also explained why such two lists were created:

We want to support the Polish pharmaceutical industry and increase the market share of products manufactured by the Polish pharmaceutical industry. We want to encourage the development of this industry, but above all, we care about drug safety and the safety of Polish patients.

Izabela Leszczyna also added that patients obviously benefit from this. In the case of drugs from the first list, the payment for patients will be reduced by 10 percent, and in the case of the second list – by 15 percent.

What does the draft new list of reimbursed medicines include?

“There are 33 new therapies available, the project will be presented today in its traditional formula on the website of the Ministry of Health,” began Deputy Minister of Health Maciej Miłkowski. Then he talked about new reimbursed therapies. In terms of gynecological oncology and gynecology the refund will cover:

  • pembrolizumab in the treatment of patients with cervical cancer;
  • relugolix, estradiol and norethisterone in the treatment of patients with uterine fibroids;
  • extension of indications of use olaparib in the treatment of patients with ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer without mutations in the BRCA 1/2 genes.

In case of cardiology it is:

  • extension of reimbursement indications for ezetimibe, ezetimibe in combination with atorvastatin in the treatment of patients with heart failure;

  • changes in the drug program including the treatment of pediatric patients and extension of indications for adults with lipid disorders;

  • expansion of cardiological indications for use empagliflozin in patients with heart failure.

New list of reimbursed drugs in the scope rare diseases includes:

  • changing the provisions of the SMA drug program in the field of gene therapy Zolgensma;

  • expanding access to the RSV vaccine for children suffering from SMA up to 2 years of age, cystic fibrosis up to 1 year of age;

  • comprehensive approach to the treatment of myasthenia gravis – reimbursement coverage efgartigimod alfa, rituximab, mycophenolate mofetil;

  • coverage by refund olipudase alfa in the treatment of patients with acid deficiency sphingomyelinase – technology with a high level of innovation (TLI) financed from the Medical Fund.

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