Irish Life Update 06/06/2023

As your reliable financial services provider, we understand the concerns raised in recent media coverage regarding the coverage of high-cost drugs for cancer treatment provided by Irish Life Health. We would like to take this opportunity to address these concerns and provide reassurance.

Irish Life Health are committed to providing comprehensive cancer cover and support to their members. They strictly adhere to best practice guidelines for high-cost drugs, ensuring consistent and equitable treatment for all customers and would like to highlight the following important points:

  • The vast majority of drugs for cancer treatment are automatically covered for Irish Life Health customers in line with the cover on the customer’s particular policy.
  • There is a small number of very high-cost drug treatments which require pre-approval. 97% of all requests secured approval in 2022 to be funded by Irish Life Health. 
  • The National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE) is an independent, expert-led body that reviews the efficacy of high-cost drugs for use in Ireland and assesses the benefits of new treatments for specific conditions based on clinical evidence once these treatments have been authorised by the European Medicines Agency. Using this process means that they are fully transparent and equitable between all customers.
  • Drugs are approved by the NCPE for use in specific medical treatments. In some instances, a consultant may make a recommendation for a drug for a patient which has not been approved by the NCPE for that particular medical indication. In those instances, where a drug is not approved, alternative drugs and treatments are made available to the affected patient.
  • They agree that the time frame for NCPE/HSE approval of certain high-cost drugs can be too slow and would like to see this timeframe reduce considerably.
  • They will continue to review this process to ensure it remains the most effective, clear and transparent way for approving high-cost drugs in the interest of fair and equitable treatment for customers.  

For more information on the comprehensive supports and treatments offered to customers affected by cancer, please click here

Thank you for your trust in Lyons Financial Services and Irish Life Health. We remain dedicated to providing you with the best possible services and support during challenging times.