Funding changes to dornase alfa for cystic fibrosis

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Accessing funded dornase alfa

From 1 December 2020 dornase alfa will be listed in the Community and the Hospital Medicines List of the Pharmaceutical Schedule.

Find the listing in the Pharmaceutical Schedule(external link)

Read the decision to transition to funded access via a standard Special Authority.

This change will:

  • make it easier for patients to access dornase alfa
  • save time for prescribers because they can apply for funding online and get a decision faster
  • will cover all age groups with one set of criteria
  • remove the requirements for some clinical tests for stable spirometry in patients aged 5 years and over in order to access dornase alfa
  • increase access to dornase alfa to people who present with multiple exacerbations rather than requiring hospitalisations. 

Clinicians do not need to take any action for patients who are already accessing funded dornase alfa. Current Special Authority approvals will be transferred to the standard Special Authority system. 

Information for people with cystic fibrosis

People taking dornase alfa

You should not experience any difference. You will continue to receive dornase alfa from your pharmacy as you do now. There will be no changes to what you currently pay for dornase alfa.

The only thing changing is how your doctor or specialist applies for funding on your behalf. Applications for dornase alfa funding will be processed differently after 1 December 2020.

People who are not using dornase alfa

If you have cystic fibrosis and do not currently use dornase alfa, talk to your doctor or specialist about whether it is the right treatment for you.

For healthcare professionals

This will mean:

  • Patients aged 5 years and over:
    • Currently on a life time approval will automatically be transitioned to a new Special Authority number valid without need for renewal under the revised renewal criteria
    • Currently on a one-month trial will be automatically issued a new Special Authority under the revised initial criteria valid for 12 months.
  • Patients aged under 5 years:
    • Who have accessed at least one renewal of their approval will be automatically transitioned to a standard Special Authority number valid without need for renewal under the revised renewal criteria
    • Currently on their first one-month trial will be automatically issued a Special Authority under the revised initial criteria valid for 12 months.

Patients who accessed dornase alfa before 1 December 2020 will automatically be transitioned to a new approval and Special Authority number.

If you have any issues contact the Ministry of Health online on 0800 243 666 (option 3 and then option 2).

Information for pharmacists

  • You will need to update the patient’s Special Authority number when next dispensing dornase alfa.
  • You will be reimbursed in the same way as all other treatments funded via Special Authority.

Who to contact

If you have any questions about the changes, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.

If you have questions about a Special Authority application, contact the Ministry of Health on 0800 243 666 (option 3 and then option 2).

If you have questions about funding or access criteria: