ABILIFY™ now reimbursed in British Columbia
MONTREAL, April 28 /CNW Telbec/ - Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada is pleased
to announce that British Columbia has recognized the value of ABILIFY™
(aripiprazole) for the treatment of schizophrenia and other psychosis
(not dementia related) in patients who have failed or are intolerant to
another specified anti-psychotic agent and has agreed to list ABILIFY
as a reimbursed benefit through BC PharmaCare as of April 26, 2011.
This decision recognizes the need for additional therapeutic options for
British Columbia physicians to treat these serious, complex and
life-altering mental illnesses that cause great hardship to patients
and their families, at great cost to society. Schizophrenia affects
approximately 1% of the adult population, which in BC would amount to
approximately 38,000 people out of the 3.8 million residents age 15 and
"In responding to more than 50,000 contacts a year from individuals and
family members across BC living with schizophrenia and other mental
illnesses, we know first-hand the challenges of getting people on a
treatment plan that works and is sustained," says Jane Duval, Executive
Director, BC Schizophrenia Society (BCSS). "That's why the addition of
a new treatment such as Abilify is important. It should allow more
people to get better control of their disease, giving them a better
quality of life."
With current therapy, more than 40% of people with schizophrenia stop
taking their medication within the first year - mainly because of
treatment side effects. This causes further problems including return
of symptoms, relapse and hospitalization. When the disease is not
effectively treated, it places a heavy burden on the quality of life of
patients, families and caregivers and the health care system.
Along with BC PharmaCare, ABILIFY is also reimbursed by the Quebec
public drug plan. BMS will continue to work with other provinces in the
hope that they will follow the lead of these provinces in making
ABILIFY available to all Canadians by agreeing to reimburse it on their
public drug plans.
ABILIFY™ (aripiprazole) is the latest and only third generation
antipsychotic medication. It is available by prescription only. It has
been approved by Health Canada for the treatment of schizophrenia and
related psychotic disorders in adults. It is also indicated for the
acute treatment of manic or mixed episodes of bipolar I disorder in
adults, alone or in combination with lithium or divalproex sodium.
Limited impact on weight and metabolic factors
It is an effective and safe antipsychotic with a low impact on metabolic
factors such as cholesterol, lipids and blood sugar levels. It also has
a limited impact on weight gain.
Effective control of symptoms associated with social functioning
In randomized clinical trials, ABILIFY was found to improve positive,
negative, depressive and cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia. It offers
effective control for symptoms associated with social functioning and a
good safety/tolerability profile.
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.
™ABILIFY is a trademark of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. used under
license by Bristol-Myers Squibb Canada.
Source for BC population statistics:
SOURCE Bristol Myers Squibb
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