Sacubitril valsartan - Entresto™ - accepted for use in Scotland by SMC

Novartis’ new heart failure medicine, Entresto™, sacubitril valsartan accepted for use in Scotland by the Scottish Medicines Consortium

  •  SMC recognised sacubitril valsartan represents a new therapeutic option for adult patients with symptomatic chronic heart failure with reduced ejection fraction1and may be used instead of the current gold standard treatment for the condition
  •  Heart failure affects over 45,000 people in Scotland, around 11,900 people were admitted to hospital and approximately 23% died within 30 days of being discharged in 2013.
  •  The largest ever heart failure study to date, PARADIGM-HF, was led by coprincipal investigator, Professor John McMurray from University of Glasgow. It showed sacubitril valsartan saved lives and reduced hospitalisation for people with heart failure when compared to the current gold standard, enalapril, an ACEinhibitor commonly used to treat the condition.
  •  Clinical experts and the patient group consulted by SMC noted that there is an unmet need for more effective treatments in the management of heart failure.

The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has accepted Entresto™ (sacubitril/valsartan) for use within NHS Scotland for the treatment of adult patients with symptomatic chronic heart failure with reduced ejection fraction1. The SMC recognised sacubitril valsartan represents a new therapeutic option for patients with chronic heart failure with reduced ejection fraction. It noted that it may be used instead of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors1, the current gold standard treatment for the condition.

“Patients with heart failure can have a poor prognosis, with survival rates often being worse than certain types of cancer, such as breast and prostate.” said Dr Roy Gardner, Consultant Cardiologist, Scottish National Advanced Heart Failure Service, Golden Jubilee National Hospital.

“The acceptance of sacubitril/valsartan will allow many heart failure patients in Scotland to benefit from a reduced risk of death and hospitalisation.” 

Heart failure occurs when the heart muscle cannot pump a normal amount of oxygen-rich blood around the body, resulting in a substantial impact on patients’ daily lives. In Scotland, heart failure was responsible for 11,900 hospitalisations in 20133. It was estimated that 25% of patients needed emergency re-admissions within 30 days of hospital discharge4 and 23% of patients hospitalised with heat failure died within 30 days of being discharged from hospital4.

“Today’s advice represents an important milestone for heart failure patients in Scotland.” said Dimitrios Georgiopoulos MD, Chief Scientific Officer, Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Ltd.

“The SMC conducts a robust evaluation of the clinical value and the cost-effectiveness of new treatments, and we applaud the SMC for accepting the use of sacubitril/valsartan under its licensed indication with no restriction.”

The SMC carried out an evaluation of the clinical and cost effectiveness of sacubitril/valsartan and based its advice on data from the PARADIGM-HF study, the largest Phase 3 heart failure clinical trial conducted to date. The study compared the efficacy and safety of sacubitril/valsartan with enalapril, in 8,399 patients with chronic heart failure with reduced ejection fraction. Results showed that sacubitril/valsartan, compared to enalapril, reduced the risk of death from heart-related causes or first hospitalisation for heart failure by 20% (absolute risk reduction: 4.7%)1. Based on this evidence, the SMC concluded that the introduction of sacubitril/valsartan would offer an alternative treatment to ACE inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARB) in patients with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction.
Sacubitril/valsartan is now available for use in the UK for the treatment of adult patients with symptomatic chronic heart failure with reduced ejection fraction. Following publication of the SMC’s advice, NHS Boards in Scotland will now decide whether sacubitril/valsartan should be added to their formulary.

Novartis is also working with NICE to ensure as many eligible patients as possible will be able to benefit from sacubitril/valsartan once it has been appraised.