In October 2019, the pharmaceutical company Novartis took legal action to attempt to prevent the Ministry of Health from publicly releasing the therapeutic and financial criteria justifying the approval and pricing of Kymriah, a new treatment within cellular immunotherapies (CART). The treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, a type of cancer of the bone marrow and the blood that especially affects children and those under 25, was priced at around 320,000 euros in Spain. It is the first treatment of its kind to be approved in Spain.
Now the judge, in the ruling just made public, has argued that the Ministry must hear the company to find out its claims. The judge pointed to a formal defect in the process and has urged the Ministry to step back and provide Novartis with a hearing before accepting or rejecting the request of the No es Sano campaign.
The campaign celebrates the fact that the judge has not opted in favour of preventing access to the information, as the company requested on the grounds of protecting its commercial interests, pointing to a formal defect in the process. The campaign also hopes that the Ministry of Health complies with the ruling and, having heard Novartis, continues the process of publication of the information requested.
The organizations that make up the campaign reiterate that it is fundamental to continue to take steps towards transparency and that his type of information in relation to the approval and financing of medicines and treatments must be considered to be of public interest, and therefore should be available to citizens. The Transparency Council itself has recognised this, as have international bodies such as the World Health Organization.