Alison Clough, Acting CEO of the ABPI, responds to NHS England’s announcement that a large number of medicines are to be de-listed from the Cancer Drugs Fund.
Alison Clough said: “Today’s announcement on the Cancer Drugs Fund de-listings is extremely disappointing. Any decision which deprives patients of life-saving and life-enhancing medicines is a significant blow to the health and well-being of future NHS patients. The CDF was specifically set up to allow patients to benefit from timely access to the innovative cancer medicines that are routinely available to patients in other European countries. This announcement flies in the face of that intent.
“We have long voiced the view that the Cancer Drugs Fund is a sticking plaster, albeit one that has enabled thousands of patients to access new and innovative medicines. We believe that the de-listing process, which we recognise will be distressing for cancer patients, could have been avoided if NICE and NHS England had transitioned earlier to a more appropriate, sustainable solution for evaluating and approving cancer medicines for routine use. We are pleased that treatments for existing patients will be protected, but remain of the view that this re-evaluation process was fundamentally flawed.
“The NHS in England spends just under 10p in every £1 on branded medicines, which represents just under 10% of the overall NHS budget*. Under the current Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme (PPRS), the UK pharmaceutical industry will pay around £4billion back to the Department of Health over the five years of the Scheme, and this year alone is expected to pay back £800million. This agreement was intended to provide the NHS with a unique opportunity to increase the availability and use of the newer, innovative medicines.
“The ABPI looks forward to the upcoming public consultation on creating a more sustainable solution for managing the Cancer Drugs Fund from 2016. We sincerely hope that the future proposals will lead to a robust solution finally being put in place and that many more patients will be able to benefit from the latest medicines that are routinely available in many other European countries.
“We remain committed to working with NICE, NHS England and the Government to help create a more joined-up system which fully recognises the contribution that modern cancer medicines make to improving NHS cancer outcomes.”
* Office of Health Economics estimate, including a standard assumption of 12.5% discount on branded list price.
Watch the video below from ABPI Acting CEO, Alison Clough:
The ABPI represents innovative research-based biopharmaceutical companies, large, medium and small, leading an exciting new era of biosciences in the UK.
Our industry, a major contributor to the economy of the UK, brings life-saving and life-enhancing medicines to patients. Our members supply 90 per cent of all medicines used by the NHS, and are researching and developing over two-thirds of the current medicines pipeline, ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of helping patients prevent and overcome diseases.
The ABPI is recognised by government as the industry body negotiating on behalf of the branded pharmaceutical industry, for statutory consultation requirements including the pricing scheme for medicines in the UK.
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