yesterday the Catalan Department of Health Services announced that it has signed a risk sharing deal involving the Catalan Institute of Oncology and Astra Zeneca. This pioneer project is the first of its kind in Spain in order to balance patients access to new medicines and sustainability of the health care system. This pilot project has a duration of one year and in relation to the results obtained may successively become the standard for market access of innovative drugs in Catalonia from 2012 onward. The current agreement is formed around Astra Zeneca's lung cancer drug Iressa (gefitinib). Patient follow up and evaluations are being performed at the Catalan Institute of Oncology. Further details of the scheme have not been published.
This is certainly a large step forward in Spain and a consequence to attempt to rationalize costs and to identify patients most likely to benefit from new treatments.