Quebec leads the way in improving access to Rheumatoid Arthritis treatments



    Orencia(R) added to the list of reimbursed medications

    MONTREAL, June 26 /CNW Telbec/ - Quebec is the first province in Canada
to add Orencia to its list of reimbursed medications to treat rheumatoid
arthritis. Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada is happy to announce today that
Orencia(R) (abatacept), the first in a new class of biologic agents for
rheumatoid arthritis (RA) will be reimbursed by the Régime général d'assurance
médicaments du Québec.
    Orencia is now available to adults with moderate to severe rheumatoid
arthritis who have had an inadequate response to one or more DMARDs and/or TNF
(tumour necrosis factor) antagonists.
    "Access to effective treatment options is key for this 'one size does not
fit all' disease," said Andy Chabot Executive Director, The Arthritis Society,
Quebec Division. "The decision by the Quebec government to include Orencia on
the Formulary will have an important positive impact on the quality of life of
many people in this province suffering from RA."
    The Quebec government's decision is based largely on long term efficacy
data showing significant improvements of RA symptoms in Orencia-treated
patients who haven't been adequately treated by other medications.
    Orencia was approved for use in Canada in June 2006 following a priority
review process by Health Canada. Orencia is given as a 30-minute infusion
every four weeks and has been shown to reduce pain and joint inflammation,
inhibit the progression of damage to bones and cartilage, and improve physical
function and quality of life.

    About Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada

    Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada is an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, a global pharmaceutical and related health care
products company whose mission is to extend and enhance human life.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada is a leading provider of medicines to fight
cancer, cardiovascular and metabolic disorders, infectious diseases (including
HIV/AIDS), nervous system diseases and serious mental illness. Bristol-Myers
Squibb Company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the BMY symbol
(NYSE:  BMY). Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada's operations are headquartered in
Montréal, Québec.




For further information:

For further information: Marc Osborne, Director, Public Relations,
Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada, (514) 333-2463, marc.osborne@bms.com; Sylvie
Lafrance, Consultant, HKDP Communications and Public Affairs, (418) 523-3352
ext. 243, slafrance@hkdp.qc.ca


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