- Targeted combination treatment aims to prevent cancer recurrence for patients who have undergone surgery
- First targeted adjuvant therapy for melanoma to be listed on the Régie de l'assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) List of Medications
DORVAL, QC, Oct. 8, 2019 /CNW/ - Novartis is pleased to announce that the combination of Tafinlar® (dabrafenib) and Mekinist® (trametinib) is now listed under the Quebec public drug insurance plan to prevent recurrence of melanoma (adjuvant therapy) following surgery for eligible melanoma patients with the BRAF V600 mutationii. The combination use of the two Novartis cancer therapies as targeted treatment will be reimbursed for patients who meet specific criteria.
"Having this targeted treatment option for melanoma patients with the BRAF V600 mutation following surgery is an important step forward to prevent recurrence of this disease which has a high risk of recurrence," said Dr. Joël Claveau, Dermatologist at the Melanoma and Skin Cancer Clinic at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire, Hôtel-Dieu de Québec in Quebec City. "When we treat melanoma, we are always looking ahead and having new treatment options available for different melanoma patients is critical. This is very good news for melanoma patients in Quebec."
This year, an estimated 7,800 Canadians will receive a melanoma diagnosisiii. Changes or mutations in the BRAF gene, specifically a BRAF V600E or BRAF V600K mutation, are found in about half of all melanomasiv.
"Novartis is very pleased with the decision by the Quebec government to make this combination therapy available to eligible patients. Our commitment to cancer care includes bringing new treatment options to patients with the goal of transforming the way they live with cancer," said Christian Macher, Country President & General Manager, Oncology, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc.
Combination use of Tafinlar® plus Mekinist® is approved by Health Canada to treat patients with melanoma with a BRAF V600 mutation and involvement of lymph node(s), following complete resection and for the treatment of patients with unresectable or metastatic BRAF V600 mutated melanomai.
Tafinlar® (dabrafenib) + Mekinist® (trametinib) Important Safety Information
The full prescribing information for Tafinlar® and Mekinist® can be found at: www.novartis.ca.
About Novartis in Canada
Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc., a leader in the healthcare field, is committed to the discovery, development and marketing of innovative products to improve the well-being of all Canadians. In 2018, the company invested $52 million in research and development in Canada. Located in Dorval, Quebec, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc. employs approximately 1,000 people in Canada and is an affiliate of Novartis AG, which provides innovative healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. For further information, please consult www.novartis.ca.
Novartis is reimagining medicine to improve and extend people's lives. As a leading global medicines company, we use innovative science and digital technologies to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. In our quest to find new medicines, we consistently rank among the world's top companies investing in research and development. Novartis products reach more than 750 million people globally and we are finding innovative ways to expand access to our latest treatments. About 108,000 people of more than 140 nationalities work at Novartis around the world. Find out more at www.novartis.com.
Tafinlar and Mekinist are registered trademarks.
i Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc., Tafinlar® and Mekinist® Product Monographs. April 12, 2019.
ii Régie de l'assurance maladie Québec (RAMQ). List of medications in effect October 2 (2019). Accessed October 8, 2019 at:http://www.ramq.gouv.qc.ca/SiteCollectionDocuments/liste_med/2019/liste_med_2019_10_02_en.pdf
iii Canadian Cancer Society. Melanoma skin cancer statistics. Accessed October 8, 2019 at:
iv Canadian Cancer Society. Targeted therapy drugs used for melanoma skin cancer. Accessed October 8, 2019 at: https://www.cancer.ca/en/cancer-information/cancer-type/skin-melanoma/treatment/targeted-therapy/?region=on
SOURCE Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc.
For further information: Novartis Media Relations: Daphne Weatherby, Novartis Corporate Communications, +1 514 633 7873, E-mail: [email protected]