NICE technology appraisal guidance
Issued: November 2008 (last modified: December 2012)
TA162

Erlotinib for the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer

This is an extract from the guidance. The complete guidance is available at guidance.nice.org.uk/ta162

1 Guidance

The patient access scheme for erlotinib has changed. The Department of Health and the manufacturer have agreed that erlotinib will be offered to the NHS under a patient access scheme (as revised in 2012), which makes erlotinib available with a discount on the list price applied to original invoices. The discount applies for all indications of erlotinib.

The size of the discount is commercial in confidence. It is the responsibility of the manufacturer to communicate details of the discount to relevant NHS organisations. Any enquiries from NHS organisations about the patient access scheme should be directed to Roche Customer Care (0800 731 5711).

NICE technology appraisal guidance 162 is under review. Publication of the reviewed guidance is expected in 2014.

1.1 Erlotinib is recommended, within its licensed indication, as an alternative to docetaxel as a second-line treatment option for patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) only on the basis that it is provided by the manufacturer at an overall treatment cost (including administration, adverse events and monitoring costs) equal to that of docetaxel.

1.2 The decision to use erlotinib or docetaxel (as outlined in section 1.1) should be made after a discussion between the responsible clinician and the individual about the potential benefits and adverse effects of each treatment.

1.3 Erlotinib is not recommended for the second-line treatment of locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC in patients for whom docetaxel is unsuitable (that is, where there is intolerance of or contraindications to docetaxel) or for third-line treatment after docetaxel therapy.

1.4 People currently receiving treatment with erlotinib, but for whom treatment would not be recommended according to section 1.3, should have the option to continue treatment until they and their clinicians consider it appropriate to stop.