Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (1361)

Louise O'Reilly


1361. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the preparations taken to date by the HSE to develop its own chemotherapy compounding capacity on the island of Ireland to reduce reliance on the United Kingdom for chemotherapy medicines; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32660/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

Compounded chemotherapy products, or Systemic Anti-Cancer Therapies (SACT), are specific medications produced to meet individual patient requirements. SACT are provided in the 8 designated cancer centres and in 18 other hospitals, ensuring that patients receive their treatment as close to home as possible.

Of the 26 hospitals providing SACT services, 17 have aseptic compounding units and 9 are fully dependent on outsourcing. While this need is partly met by an Irish-based supplier, approximately 15% of compounded SACT is sourced from the United Kingdom at present.

As part of the overall Government response to the planned exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union, my Department and the HSE are working on a comprehensive and co-ordinated set of actions to ensure, as far as is possible, continuity of supply of all medicines post-Brexit, with a clear focus on particularly important medicines such as compounded chemotherapy treatments.