The Bromley NHS Primary Care Trust (PCT) has been asked by a court to reconsider giving the cancer treatment drug Tarceva to Linda Gordon, 47. The High Court was told that the drug had not been approved for use by the NHS.
But Mr Justice Ousele said that it was not legal that the NHS refuses to fund the drug despite clinical trials documenting its success. "It would be to raise false hopes to have a trial and then say 'well the results really don't affect our decision'. I emphasize that the claimant may well find it impossible to challenge a refusal of further funding, even on a trial basis, if the decision is explained and grapples with the relevant issues," he ruled.
Ms Gordon is suffering from lung cancer and her doctors have given the court assurances that the drug would prolong her life by 8 to 10 months.
In court she said that she was able to afford the drug for some months and that had made a whole lot of difference to her symptoms.