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ABPI: Put value-based assessment back on the agenda

Industry body wants stalled project to be revived in a broad context that would include NICE reform

ABPI London offices 

Work to develop a value-based assessment approach to the UK's drug appraisal process should be revived despite the significant challenges it faced last year, according to the ABPI.

The Association's director of value and access Paul Catchpole told the Westminster Health Forum last week: “Value-based assessment work progressed through 2014 but by September it became clear that it was proving too difficult at the time to progress with.

“We need to change that and we need to get this back on the agenda in a broader context.”

He also noted the NICE board's acknowledgement that a much more fundamental review of how new medicines are made available for patients in an end-to-end way across the system was required.

NICE's consultation on value-based assessment changes to the way it assesses medicines looked at taking a broader, societal view of their value and - in theory - could have meant fewer rejections of novel therapies.

The process was to take into account criteria such as whether a therapy would allow a patient to return to work, but after a three-month consultation NICE decided further work was needed, not least because its board “found no agreement in responses on the proposed changes”.

In the meantime, Catchpole said, NICE methods had not, as had been anticipated, changed to incorporate 'burden of illness' or 'wider societal benefits', though its 'end-of-life' criteria remained in place.

'Put PPRS money towards ensuring appropriate medicines used'

Catchpole also used the event to call for UK pharma's repayments to the government under the Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme (PPRS) to be earmarked for ensuring that medicines are used appropriately.

“What has happened to the PPRS money is a good question,” he said, adding: “It could be spent on initiatives which help ensure that we are using UK medicines appropriately.”

The ABPI is already working with NHS England on a joint medicines optimisation programme that would go some way toward this and, with the government's focus on medicines optimisation expected to continue, the Association will be working to raise the programme's profile this year with a series of regional road shows.

“By and large, the UK is still a lower user of new and innovative medicines compared to many other countries,” he said, referring to last year's International Metrics report.

“For 2015 we need to look at how we join up the players in the system, how we look at MHRA, NICE and NHS England and how we get more collaboration.”

Article by
Kirstie Pickering

19th January 2015

From: Healthcare



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