300 UAE arthritis patients to receive free treatment
According to Dr Amiri, all patients will be assessed medically and financially before being provided this treatment
Three hundred people suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) will be provided free treatment by the Ministry of Health and Prevention, officials announced on Tuesday.
While signing an agreement with Newbridge Pharmaceuticals that will provide medicines to patients for three years, Dr Amin Al Amiri, Undersecretary for Public Health Policy and Licensing at the ministry said the move was aimed at achieving ‘therapeutic happiness’ through a sustainable healthcare system.
“The initiative will rehabilitate and benefit those patients who do not have health insurance or even those whose basic insurance does not cover this treatment,” said Dr Amiri.
While there is a range of drugs to treat the disease, the cost is a prohibitive factor. A person suffering from RA can on an average spend anywhere between Dh6,000 to D9,000 per month on treatment.
According to Dr Amiri, all patients will be assessed medically and financially before being provided this treatment.
“We will assess the need of the patients and once selected, we will do a complete follow-up so as to complete their treatment plan as recommended by their physician,” he said.
The pharmaceuticals will provide the medicine called Cimzia which treats moderate to severe RA.
“Newbridge has taken this responsibility to provide medication for the entire duration of treatment to implement the initiative for a number of patients who have been diagnosed with the disease,” said Dr Joseph Henein from Newbridge Pharmaceuticals.
After the initial assessments, detailed treatment plans and monthly reports on the implementation of the treatment plan will be submitted to the ministry.
The ministry will review the functioning of the programme and printed materials related to it.