New jab Tirzepatide that's ‘better than fat jab Wegovy’ approved on the NHS – are you eligible? | The Sun

THOUSANDS of Brits with type 2 diabetes are set to benefit from a new jab greenlit for NHS use.

Patients should be able to access tirzepatide – also known as Mounjaro – early next year, subject to manufacturer Eli Lilly's supply.

More than five million people in the UK live with diabetes, 90 per cent of whom have type 2, according to Diabetes UK.

Tirzepatide can be an option for those who don't have their condition under control, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) – an independent body providing guidance on health services – stated.

It recommended that once-weekly jab be prescribed to patients who can't tolerate metformin – the first-line medicine for type 2 diabetes – and should be taken alongside diet and exercise.

Some 180,000 Brits could benefit from it, according to NICE.

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Its independent committee said almost two in three people with type 2 diabetes do not have it under control with current medicines, putting them at risk of serious complications.

Those include including kidney disease, eye problems – including blindness -stroke and heart attack.

Helen Knight, director of medicines evaluation at NICE, said: "There are very few new medicines being developed to treat difficult-to-manage type 2 diabetes.

"Our committee recognised the potential tirzepatide has to provide an effective and good value treatment option for all those living with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes."

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NICE's recommendation "will offer fresh hope" to those struggling to live with the condition, she went on.

Responding to the announcement, NHS England's Chief Pharmaceutical Officer David Webb said tizerpatide's approval was "great news for people living with difficult to manage type 2 diabetes", especially at a time "when there is disruption to the supply of key drugs" used to treat the condition.

Diabetics have struggled to get their hands on vital Ozempic jabs in recent months, as they're in short supply due to massive demand.

Health Minister Neil O’Brien acknowledged the issue, saying: “We know that shortages of other types of medications for treating type 2 diabetes – including Ozempic – have caused distress and frustration for patients, so it’s welcome news that NICE has recommended a new treatment option for this condition.”

He said tirzepatide could provide "an invaluable new option"for type 2 diabetes patients.

NICE's recommendation came in form of draft guidance, with its final guidance expected to be published on October 11.

"Once final guidance is published the product will be made available in the NHS within 90 days dependent on the supply of licensed product by the manufacturer," NICE said.

The jab's manufacturer Eli Lily told Sun Health that it was "committed to bringing Mounjaro to British patients".

"However before launching a new treatment Lilly needs to ensure that it can appropriately supply the medicine," it went on.

Factors that might influence that include "expected demand and competitive supply", the manufacturer said.

Eli Lilly said it's developing "alternative presentations" of the jab to improve supply to the UK such as "a vial and patient-friendly multidose KwikPen".

Publication of NICE's draft guidance comes after the public body requested more evidence from Mounjaro manufacturer Eli Lilly on the drug's effectiveness in treating type 2 diabetes.

A report published in June said NICE "recognised the importance of new treatment options" but "more evidence is needed on the clinical and cost-effectiveness of the drug before it is recommended for NHS use".

Its latest guidance said clinical trials showed using tirzepatide "resulted in significant reductions in blood sugar levels and body weight compared with semaglutide, insulin therapy or a placebo".

It added that almost all participants in the study reached better glucose control, while between 54 to 88 per cent lost 5 per cent or more of their body weight – "significantly more than any of the comparators".

NICE is appraising tirzepatide as a tool for weight loss separately.

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Today's announcement comes days after game-changing fat loss jabs Wegovy, which contain the ingredient semaglutide, were made available in the UK to help tackle obesity.

Pharma company Novo Nordisk said it had released a “controlled and limited” supply of the injections, having pushed back their launch from earlier this year.

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