Funding drugs and other health technologies

Our response to NICE and NHS England's consultation on changes to funding arrangements

29 January 2017

NICE and NHS England launched a consultation in Autumn 2016 on changes proposed  to the arrangements for evaluating and funding drugs and other health technologies appraised through NICE’s Technology Appraisal (TA) and Highly Specialised Technologies (HST) programmes.

We argued that the NHS needs to become more adept at phasing in new treatments and technologies that are proven to be cost-effective, and disinvesting in outdated lower-value activities.

We also recognised that introducing new technologies can cause disruption to existing services but in times of financial constraint the need to encourage innovation, and shift resources to higher-value activities, is even more urgent.

Furthermore, we argued if the NHS has to prioritise new technologies in a period of financial constraint it should prioritise treatments and technologies by their relative cost-effectiveness, rather than their budgetary impact.

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