Poland will spend over PLN 700 million (EUR 154.8 million) in 2021-2023 to cure rare diseases as a part of the Rare Disease Plan, the health minister has announced on Monday.
Currently, the Plan defines 40 specific tasks and deadlines for their implementation, worth over PLN 90 million (EUR 19.8 million).
“These are not all costs, because in the case of rare diseases, advanced drug therapies are of a great importance, and we will use the Medical Fund in this area,” Adam Niedzielski said at the press conference.
He added that these funds “can be used for innovative therapies not yet reimbursed.”
The health minister said that the main goal is to help patients that currently have to travel and visit various centres, or search for various specialists experienced in a given field. So, the first task is creation of centres of expertise for individual rare diseases in Poland.
The new project will develop the diagnosis of rare diseases. “We present very specific proposals for the development of both the infrastructure and the methodology of applying this research,” said Niedzielski.
The programme will also include access to medicines and foods for special nutritional uses in rare diseases.
The next goals are creation of the Polish register of rare diseases and establishment of passports for patients with a rare disease that “will contain the basic characteristics and can be a substitute for the treatment history,” said the health minister.
Among many tasks Niedzielski also mentioned an education campaign that will raise patients’ awareness in the field of rare illnesses, because, as he said, in Poland knowledge about these diseases is very limited.
According to the health minister around 6-8 percent of the population, or at least two to three million people in Poland, have rare diseases.