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NICE plan to support new device to improve red blood cell exchange in sickle cell disease management

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is asking for views on its plans to recommend a new device that automatically replaces sickle red blood cells with healthy red blood cells in people with sickle cell disease.

In the public consultation that opened yesterday (Monday 19 October), the draft medical technology guidance provisionally supports the use of the Spectra Optia Apheresis System for automated red blood cell exchange in patients with sickle cell disease who need regular transfusion.  The evidence examined indicates that this automated device is faster to use and patients need the process less often than manual red blood cell exchange. As well as these improvements for patients, using Spectra Optia is estimated to be cost saving in most patients compared with manual red blood cell exchange or top-up transfusion. Potential savings depend on the patient’s clinical circumstance and if devices already owned by the NHS can also be used to treat sickle cell disease.

More information on the medical technology draft guidance consultation for the Spectra Optia system is available at http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/indevelopment/gid-mt271.

The consultation closes on 16 November 2015.

Read the full press release on the NICE website.

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