Abbott Laboratories, Limited

Abbott Laboratories, Limited

November 08, 2005 13:31 ET

CONVENIENT BIOLOGIC FOR ARTHRITIS IS ON EIGHT GOVERNMENT DRUG PLANS

RA patients may access new treatment that can be self-administered once every two weeks Attention: Health/Medical Editor MONTRÉAL, QUÉBEC--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 8, 2005) - -- Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients who are eligible for the newest form of treatment for their auto-immune disorder can now access this biologic therapy on the Ontario, Québec, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia government drug plans. Convenient to administer, HUMIRA is sold in an award-winning (1) , single-dose syringe that can be self-administered at home by most patients, including those whose hands have been affected by RA.

Health Canada recently approved HUMIRA (adalimumab) for reducing the signs and symptoms and inhibiting the progression of structural damage in adults with moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis who have had an inadequate response to one or more disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs).

HUMIRA requires no mixing or measuring. The syringe contains one 40-milligram dose that can be self-administered, after proper training, by subcutaneous (under the skin) injection.

Available by prescription only, HUMIRA is available to patients who qualify for coverage under the Ontario, Québec, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia government drug plans. RA is most prevalent in Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan and New Brunswick(2). Across Canada, approximately 17,000 patients have access to HUMIRA through private drug benefit plans. Listings in the provinces mentioned extend the availability of HUMIRA to RA patients who depend on public plans for access to the new treatment in those provinces.

More than 300,000 Canadians of all ages live with RA (3), a debilitating, disfiguring and often disabling autoimmune disorder that incurs significant economic cost. The cause of RA is not known and there is no cure.

Researchers have determined that people with RA tend to have an excess of a protein called tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-a); this protein triggers inflammation as part of the body's normal immune system response. Overproduction of TNF-a can lead to excessive inflammation such as that found in patients with RA.

By targeting, binding to and blocking the activity of TNF-a, HUMIRA helps prevent inflammation. HUMIRA is approved for use alone or in combination with Methotrexate or other DMARDs. Abbott Laboratories, Limited markets HUMIRA in Canada.

Abbott is a global, broad-based healthcare company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals, nutritionals, and medical products including devices and diagnostics. Abbott Canada is headquartered in Saint-Laurent, Québec, and employs approximately 1,200 people.

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1. Recipient of The Arthritis Foundation Ease-of-Use Commendation seal.
2. Health Canada. Arthritis in Canada. An ongoing challenge. Ottawa: Health Canada, 2003. Page 10.
(Cat. #H39-4/14-2003E)
3. www.arthritis.ca/types of arthritis/rheumatoid.
/For further information: Joan Lister, HealthComm Inc., 905-206-1025 extn 222/ IN: HEALTH

Contact Information

  • Sheri DeCarlo, Account Executive, HealthComm Inc.
    Primary Phone: 905-206-1025 ext. 224
    Toll-Free: 888-773-7784
    E-mail: decarlo@healthcomm.ca