NHS England will offer treatment for sickle cell disease

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Thousands of people in England will receive a new treatment for sickle cell disease.

The disease, which is more common in people with African or Caribbean heritage, is an inherited blood disorder that prevents hemoglobin in red blood cells from being able to carry oxygen. The disease causes immense pain and organ failure.

Patients will be able to receive the new drug, crizanlizumab, by a transfusion drip. The drug will prevent the restriction of oxygen and blood supply by binding to a protein in the blood cells.

This is the first treatment for sickle cell in the past two decades. At least 5000 people will be helped over the next three years.