ZAGREB, July 21, 2018 – The Croatian government has dismissed as incorrect and malicious insinuations recently made in the public which create a false impression that the state does not have money for medicines for children, but it does have money for a national stadium, the government said in a press release on Saturday, adding that those claims were not based on facts and recalling that this year the state would allocate approximately 1.3 billion kuna for particularly expensive medications, an increase of 85% from 2015.
The public relations office of the Office of the Prime Minister said the government and the Health Ministry were making every effort to provide quality treatment to children suffering from severe or rare diseases and grant them access to expensive drugs.
Prime Minister Andrej Plenković held talks with the key person in Hoffmann-La Roche during the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2018, which resulted in intensive contacts between company executives in Zagreb and the Croatian Health Ministry. It was agreed to include the 23 patients suffering from SMA type 1,2 and 3, and later possibly type 4 patients, in a clinical trial which Hoffmann-La Roche conducts in several countries, including Croatia.
The government also endorsed a proposal from the Health Ministry to re-allocate budgetary funds and secure funding for the Paediatric Clinic in Zagreb, in the amount of 14 million kuna.
Spinraza, a drug used in treating spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), has been put on the list of medicines provided by the Croatian Health Insurance Fund (HZZO) while clinical trials with this new medicine started in Zagreb’s KBC Hospital on April 17 and included 23 SMA patients.
Sprinraza is a new efficient drug for the treatment of spinal muscular atrophy and it was approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in early June.