New treatment boost for cancer patients

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HUNDREDS of North East patients are benefiting from a national cancer drug fund.

The special fund was set up by the Government to pay for treatment not routinely available in the NHS.

Up to 350 people in the region have treatments paid for thanks to the fund.

Now the North of England Cancer Drug Approvals Group (Necdag) has agreed to back Cabazitaxel, a new treatment for people with aggressive prostate cancer, a further 40 could benefit.

The North East has been allocated £11million to spend on cancer drugs not funded by the NHS for this financial year, following an interim allocation of £2.8million received last autumn.

Since the original funding was made available, Necdag has given the go-ahead to 16 new treatments for people with bone marrow, blood, kidney, lung, bowel, breast, head and neck, bladder, pancreatic and prostate cancers.