- Global Pharma News & Resources

Once daily JYSELECA ®▼ (filgotinib) to be made available on the NHS in Scotland for people with moderate Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

  • Around 40,000 people across Scotland live with RA[i],[ii] of which approximately 14,000 suffer from moderate disease[iii]
  • Positive recommendation means filgotinib will be available to those previously treated for moderate RA
  • RA causes painful and debilitating symptoms which without effective management can lead to long-term, serious disability[iv]  

London, UK, 10 October 2022 – Galapagos Biotech LTD announces that the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has recommended the use of filgotinib, a once daily, oral, JAK1 preferential inhibitor, for adults who have previously been treated for moderate RA. The decision expands access to filgotinib to the estimated 14,000 people in Scotland who live with the moderate form of the disease and from today, eligible patients will be able to gain access via the health service.

Filgotinib is a once daily, oral pill that can be given on its own (as a monotherapy) or used alongside another common RA medicine, called methotrexate.[v] Eligible patients with moderate RA will have responded inadequately to intensive therapy with one or more conventional disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs).[vi]

“RA is a progressive condition where symptoms can evolve and develop over time. Disease activity is often classified as either mild, moderate, or severe depending on the intensity of symptoms experienced by the patient. It is reassuring to see filgotinib as an effective treatment option for moderate and severe patients, which offers a welcome addition alongside other RA therapies that are currently available.” said Dr Martin Perry, Consultant Physician and Rheumatologist, Hospital Subdean and Honorary Lecturer, University of Glasgow.

“Today’s decision from the SMC is welcome news for many people living with moderate RA in Scotland. This persistent disease not only causes a multitude of physical symptoms, but many also suffer with mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. Today’s recommendation could enable more people to get their RA under better control, crucially at an earlier stage of their disease, which has major implications for reducing damage caused by uncontrolled RA. For many, having an effective treatment could mean getting their life back, going back to or remaining in work and enjoying time with family and friends.” said Clare Jacklin, Chief Executive of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS).

"We are delighted that people living with moderate RA in Scotland will be able to access filgotinib on the NHS – bringing access to this treatment in line with those with severe RA as well as latest guidance from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence.” said Emma Chaffin, Vice President and Country Head, Galapagos UK and Ireland. “As a company, Galapagos is committed to supporting people suffering from inflammatory conditions such as RA and hope that this approval will help many more patients to live happier, healthier lives.”

Filgotinib was also recommended for use by the SMC for people with severe RA in September 2021 – latest guidance published in October 2022 supersedes this to now include those with moderate disease. Outside of Scotland, filgotinib is recommended by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence for the treatment of eligible patients with moderate to severe RA, both as a monotherapy and in combination with methotrexate.[vii]

[i] National Records of Scotland. Mid-2020 Population Estimated, Scotland. Available at: Accessed: September 2022

[ii] Global Burden of Disease (GBD). Incidence rates of RA. Accessed: September 2022

[iii] CHE-CE-005 Data on File_RA severity_2021-SEP

[iv] National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society. What is RA? Available at:  Accessed: September 2022

[v] Filgotinib summary of product characteristics. Available at Jyseleca, INN-filgotinib ( Accessed: September 2022

[vi] Scottish Medicines Consortium. SMC2475. Filgotinib (Jyseleca).

[vii] National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Filgotinib for treating moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. Available at: Accessed: September 2022

Editor Details

Related Links

Last Updated: 11-Oct-2022