Market and patient access to new oncology products in Europe: a current, multidisciplinary perspective

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To air challenging issues related to patient and market access to new anticancer agents, the Biotherapy Development Association—an international group focused on developing targeted cancer therapies using biological agents—convened a meeting on 29 November 2007 in Brussels, Belgium. The meeting provided a forum for representatives of pharmaceutical companies and academia to interact with European regulatory and postregulatory agencies. The goal was to increase all parties' understanding of their counterparts' roles in the development, licensure, and appraisal of new agents for cancer treatment, events guided by an understanding that cancer patients should have rapid and equitable access to life-prolonging treatments. Among the outcomes of the meeting were a greater understanding of the barriers facing drug developers in an evolving postregulatory world, clarity about what regulatory and postregulatory bodies expect to see in dossiers of new anticancer agents as they contemplate licensure and reimbursement, and several sets of recommendations to optimize patients' access to innovative, safe, effective, and fairly priced cancer treatments.

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