Charities and neurologists have urged the UK government to do away with NHS 'red tape' and make statins available to victims of multiple sclerosis as the anti-cholesterol drug aids in slowing the progress of multiple sclerosis.
Experts are in favour of revamping the present drug laws so that medicines meant to treat one disease can be relicensed to treat different diseases also. The present NHS rules does not renew license of drugs which can be used for diseases other than that for which they were originally manufactured.
Once the patent of medicines expires, firms do not make any profit from them. And if the medicine is capable of treating a new condition, drug manufacturers need to face a lengthy application process in order to get a new licence for the medicine.
According to the Multiple Sclerosis Society, the present law system is depriving tens of thousands of people with the degenerative disease from using anti-cholesterol drug statins which would cost less than 10 pence a day.
Multiple sclerosis affects a person's nerves in the brain, eyes and spinal cord. Gradually, the person loses control over basic functions of the body. Trials have proved that simvastatin, a drug meant to treat heart disease, could reduce the speed of the breakdown of brain tissues by 40 percent.
On Friday, MPs will participate in a debate of a private member's bill by Conservative MP Jonathan Evans which targets to get rid of the bureaucratic roadblocks and ensure drugs are more quickly licensed.
Michelle Mitchell, chief executive of the MS Society, asked MPs to "help cut the red tape" so that drugs are easily available to those who need them. She said, "This Bill proposes a fast and cost effective way to make new medicines available. It is nonsensical that people would be denied treatments that work because they are off patent."
Researchers at Edinburgh University have found that shorter men have 50 percent more chance to get dementia. According to the BBC, working in shifts for over 10 years made people's brain 'age by more than six years'.