Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPGY, TSX: SHQ) welcomes the news that Monday 25 June 2007 has been set as the start date of the Judicial Review in the High Court to challenge the decision by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to refuse NHS support of drugs for new patients with Alzheimer?s disease of mild severity.
John Freeman, Managing Director of Shire?s UK commercial operation says:
?Shire is pleased that, by arranging the hearing for the first possible date, James Goudie QC has acknowledged the importance and urgency of this matter to the general public and to the many thousands who will be diagnosed with Alzheimer?s disease of mild severity this year.?
Professor Stephen Curran,1 Old Age Psychiatrist and Lead Clinician at Wakefield Memory Service comments:
?The recent NICE Guidance has caused significant distress and concern to some of my newly diagnosed patients in the early stages of the disease. Adherence to the NICE Guidance has meant I am unable to offer them the drug treatment. It is good news that the court has expedited the hearing of this Judicial Review.?
John Freeman continues: ?Shire agrees completely with the grounds2 for the Judicial Review and will be supporting all stakeholders by participating in the High Court action as an interested party.?
NICE must file evidence by 1st June, with Shire and all interested parties filing their responses by 11th June in preparation for the start date of 25th June. The Judicial Review is expected to last up to four days.