Cancer Trials Ireland calls for a €1 million fund to boost cancer trials
In its pre-Budget 2017 submission, Cancer Trials Ireland has called for the establishment of a €1 million fund to enable cancer specialists open more cancer trials in Ireland.
It has also called for a ring-fenced fund of €1.4 million within the HSE for the development of the existing 14 cancer trials research centres in hospitals around the country.
Its submission argues that this investment in cancer trials will reduce the HSE’s cancer drug costs, provide people with cancer with access to promising treatments not normally available and attract more inward investment from pharmaceutical companies and international research organisations.
Cancer Trials Ireland CEO, Eibhlin Mulroe, said that investing in Ireland’s cancer trials infrastructure made sense at a number of levels.
“A recent independent report by DKM economic consultants shows that for every €1 the Exchequer invests in cancer trials it saves more than €2 in cancer treatment costs.
“This year cancer trials will save the HSE more than €6.5 million in cancer drugs costs alone,” she said.
“We are also able to multiply the impact of the Government’s investment in cancer trials by attracting investment from pharmaceutical companies and international research groups.
“In 2016 we will receive just over €3 million from the Exchequer and generate an additional €4.5 million from other sources.
“If we can get support for the initiatives in our submission we can save the State more in drugs costs, give patients more options not available through any other avenue and further develop our trials infrastructure,” she said.
There is the strong evidence to show that when cancer specialists such as oncologists have access to protected time they source and open more cancer trials in their areas of specialisation. The €1 million fund Cancer Trials Ireland is calling for would be available for oncologists for resources to support their cancer research. It suggests this fund could be administered by the National Cancer Control Programme or the Health Research Board.
Cancer Trials Ireland has also called for a ring-fenced fund of €1.4 million within the HSE for capital and staff costs to bolster the existing network of cancer trials research units in the 14 hospitals around the country. It is seeking a once off allocation of €700,000 to upgrade existing research facilities, which in some instances are housed in temporary buildings, and €700,000 towards staff costs. This investment will enable Ireland’s cancer trials infrastructure better compete with facilities in other countries and encourage global pharmaceutical companies and international research organisations to open more cancer trails in Ireland.
Cancer Trials Ireland CEO, Eibhlin Mulroesaid: “If the right research facilities are in place we can not only attract more valuable inward investment but we can offer cancer patients treatments which may otherwise only be available to patients in other countries.”
The third element of Cancer Trials Ireland’spre-Budget 2017 submission is an investment, over three years, of €850,000 in an integrated trial data management system to enhance the organisation’s proposition when seeking to attract new global trials to Ireland.
Cancer Trials Ireland’s Pre–Budget 2017 Submission can be viewed here