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Author Pratchett 'slams Alzheimer's drug restriction'

Author Pratchett 'slams Alzheimer's drug restriction'
18th August 2008

The author Terry Pratchett has criticised the decision to restrict the availability of Aricept, an Alzheimer's drug, on the NHS.

Aricept has been deemed by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) not to be cost-effective for patients in the early stages of the disease.

Mr Prachett told the Panorama programme that he could not imagine cancer patients being refused access to a treatment in similar circumstances, the BBC website reports.

"I feel particularly angry on behalf of early onset patients because it feels like an insult and the younger you are the more insulting it is," he stated.

Mr Pratchett pointed out that many early-onset Alzheimer's patients have both younger and older dependants as well as jobs they are striving to retain.

A study presented at the recent Alzheimer's Association International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease in Chicago suggested that single middle-aged people may be more likely to develop the condition than those who are in relationships.

Furthermore, it found that people who repeatedly think about their problems may be less likely to develop the disease.

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