NICE rejects Sativex in draft guidance on cannabis-based medicinal products

Source MS Trust: Draft guidance published today on August 8 does not recommend Sativex as a treatment for MS spasticity because it is not a cost-effective treatment.

In November 2018, the legal status of cannabis was amended to allow specialist clinicians to legally prescribe cannabis-derived medicinal products to patients with an exceptional clinical need.

To support this change, NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) has reviewed evidence for the benefits and costs of cannabis-based medicinal products and drawn up guidance for health professionals and the public.   

The draft guideline(link is external) acknowledges that, for people with MS, Sativex can be an effective treatment for MS spasticity which has not responded to other therapies.  However, Sativex is not recommended because, at its current list price, it is not considered to be cost-effective.  The calculations used to reach this decision indicated that Sativex would be cost-effective if the list price was reduced from £375 to £188 per pack.  Read on.