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Treatment Options in the UK

Hello All,

I have had RA for a few years now. I recently moved to London, from the US. I am on Xeljanz and methotrexate and this combination seems to have helped the most. I tried Humira injections for more than a year, but it seemed to make no difference at all.

Now that I am here, I am wondering if anyone else is using this combination and how hard it is to get the medication here through the NHS? and if so how much do you pay for it?

I see a rheumatologist here for the first time on April 10th. Hopefully, all will go well, and I will not have to keep going back home to the US every 3 months to continue my treatment.



2 Replies

A lot will hinge on what your residency status is here, as the NHS is only available to people from outside the EU with permanent residency rights in the U.K. or those who's immigration status is having "indefinite leave to remain". For people with residency right the NHS is largely free at the point of delivery as we pay through our taxes/national insurance. If you are a short term visitor or temporary student there is a surcharge that can allow you short term access, but that should have been dealt with along with your visa.

Are you seeing an NHS rheumotologist or a private one? In theory (and what happened at the hospital I used to go to) you are asked to confirm you have the right to access NHS services if you are seeing an NHS consultant. And if not you have to pay.

As for Xeljanz, it is not yet authorised for use by the NHS - it has been cleared by EU overall but not yet by UK authorities who are considering it in July see link here

Perhaps if you are seeing a private consultant under your own health insurance there is another way to get access to it, but that I wouldn't know.

1 like

Hey. Thanks for the response. No. I'm seeing an nhs doctor. I've tried several other drugs and this one seems to work the best. Looks like I'll have to figure this out!


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