NHS: Approved Drugs Must Be Made Available, Primary Care Trust Decisions Overruled

Posted 12 January 2012 | By Alexander Gaffney, RAC 

The UK's National Health Service (NHS) announced this week that decisions made by NHS's comparative-effectiveness research body, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), will take precedence over decisions made by local primary care trusts (PCTs).

PCT's had been overruling NICE decisions and blocking physicians from prescribing NICE-approved products based on the cost of the product.

No longer, said Andrew Lansley, NHS's health secretary.

"We will make certain that when NICE gives a positive appraisal for a medicine, it is automatically included in formularies," said Lansley.

The government plans to enforce NICE decisions by setting up an "Implementation Collaborative", which was proposed by NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson in December.

The change will mean all NICE decisions are automatically implemented in to local drug formularies.

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