The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has called for more evidence from Boehringer Ingelheim on its drug c for treating type 2 diabetes.
The move by NICE follows a roll out of the new drug by pharmacies across the US, while European marketing authorisation has been given.
Nevertheless, NICE has called for more evidence from Boehringer Ingelheim regarding empagliflozin before it can be recommended for use on the NHS. This includes more information to help decide “whether empagliflozin is a cost-effective use of NHS resources.”
Type 2 diabetes is a long-term, progressive condition that causes blood sugar levels to become too high. It occurs when the body is not able to use or produce enough insulin – the hormone that controls blood sugar levels and fat metabolism in the body. Many people with diabetes eventually need help to manage their blood sugar levels.
Empagliflozin works by blocking the reabsorption of glucose in the kidneys which is instead passed out of the body in the urine. It is an oral, once-daily medication belonging to a class of drugs called sodium glucose co-transporter (SGLT-2) inhibitors.
Professor Carole Longson, Director of the NICE Centre for Health Technology Evaluation, said: “NICE already recommends several treatments, alongside lifestyle and dietary advice, specifically for managing blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. Each has its advantages and disadvantages that affect how suitable they are. New treatments, like empagliflozin, will help clinicians give people with type 2 diabetes the right treatment.
“There is good evidence which shows that empagliflozin is clinically effective. But we need more information to demonstrate that it is cost effective when compared with other treatments the NHS already provides.”