JointHealth™ express   February 21, 2008

Great news for people living with ankylosing spondylitis: the government of Saskatchewan today announced that etanercept (Enbrel®) and adalimumab (Humira®) will be added to the provincial medication reimbursement formulary for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis. The previous government had declined to list all approved biologic response modifiers for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis, so this is a tremendous step forward.

Arthritis Consumer Experts held a press conference in Regina in November, drawing attention to this critical issue. As well, countless individuals and organizations across the country have written letters to the Saskatchewan government, and we are pleased that the voice of arthritis has been heard.

While this is great news, the Saskatchewan government has still declined to list infliximab (Remicade®) for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis. Arthritis Consumer Experts believes that people who depend on the provincial medication reimbursement plan should have access to the full arsenal of treatment options, and so we will be calling on government to list infliximab on the provincial medication formulary alongside etanercept and adalimumab for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis.

We urge you to write to the government of Saskatchewan, thanking them for making this decision and asking them to list infliximab as well. Remind the government that each arthritis patient is unique, and that different medications work best for different people.