Published 12 Oct 2016
In 2015, a New Zealander by the name of Jeffrey Paterson gained worldwide attention for his fight to have his country fund a life-saving drug called Keytruda. While he lost his battle with cancer recently, his work helped Australia's Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme approve the drug for the treatment of melanoma in others.
For those making superannuation claims who are suffering from cancer, it is important to know what this drug is and why it matters to you. To help, here are four key points you should know about.
1. 50 per cent success rate
Keytruda is an example of an immunotherapy drug, which supports the body's immune system whilst identifying and fighting cancerous cells. It differs from the main cancer treatment, chemotherapy, as it does not kill good cells along with cancerous ones.
One of the defining marks of Keytruda is its success rate. It has been proven to reduce or eliminate cancer in nearly 50 per cent of patients with advanced melanoma.
While it's not a silver bullet, it does offer respondents an excellent alternative to the horrors of chemotherapy.
2. It works on mesothelioma too
According to the American Association for Cancer Research, the drug can help control the asbestos-related disease. In fact, the 76 per cent control rate is a major boost to cancer research as well as those suffering from the disease.
Lead investigator Evan Alley said "with a median survival of only about one year, there is a clear need for new treatment options."
3. Access is limited
At the moment, the drug is currently limited to people who have mesothelioma. There are also a number of restrictions. One is that you will have to prove you have exhausted all other options, and the drug represents your last hope.
Having said this there are pathways available, which are clearly sign-posted for suffers. Yet, due to the complexity of the law surrounding funding, it's important to seek the guidance of a superannuation dispute lawyer.
If you are interested in understanding more about the Keytruda drug, make sure you talk to experts in the field of compensation law. At Gerard Malouf and Partners, we understand the issues and grievances that cancer suffers shoulder. Our compassionate approach to claims means that we place your needs and interests at the centre of all our discussions.
If you would like to know more about making a super claim, contact a representative today.