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'They’ve hung me out to dry' – hundreds of people with MS being denied drugs that could help the disease

Hundreds of people with Multiple Sclerosis in New Zealand are being denied drugs that have been shown to help combat the disease.

Brendan Rochford has had MS for eight years. He says the drug Tysabri has transformed his life.

"Since I've been on it, it's been brilliant for me. It's basically taken the disease and knocked it on the head," Mr Rochford told 1 NEWS.

However, for him to continue getting Tysabri, Pharmac says he has to be able to walk 500 metres unassisted.

"They've hung me out to dry and I'm not in a position that I'm ready to be hung out to dry yet," Mr Rochford said.

Multiple Sclerosis New Zealand says Pharmac is following unfair and outdated drug access rules.

A Pharmac spokesperson says new evidence will be reviewed at their funding meeting in November.

"Obviously what we've got now is some new evidence and we're keen to look at that new evidence," Pharmac Operations Director Lisa Williams said.

A review that can't come soon enough for MS sufferers like Mr Rochford.

MS New Zealand says Pharmac is following unfair and outdated drug access rules. Source: 1 NEWS