Roger Godsiff – 2015 Parliamentary Question to the Department of Health

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Roger Godsiff on 2015-11-02.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what arrangements he plans to put in place to assess new drugs for rare cancers.

George Freeman

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence is the independent body that makes decisions on the clinical and cost effectiveness of drugs, including those for rare cancers, based on thorough assessment of the best available evidence.

The Government has also established the Cancer Drugs Fund, which has helped over 72,000 cancer patients in England to access life-extending drugs that would not otherwise have been available to them.

The Early Access to Medicines Scheme (EAMS) was launched in April 2014 to support access in the United Kingdom to unlicensed or off-label medicines representing a significant advance in treatment in areas of unmet medical need. Eight EAMS Promising Innovative Medicines designations and four positive EAMS scientific opinions have been issued so far, including some for new cancer drugs.

The independent Accelerated Access Review is currently looking at how we can reduce the time, cost, and risk of drug development, develop a new range of flexible reimbursement models and consider the long term landscape for innovation adoption. The Review’s recommendations are expected in spring 2016.