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NICE seeks input on health tech changes

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UK health and care excellence body NICE has launched a public consultation on proposed changes its health tech evaluation programmes.

From today until 13 October 2021, NICE is seeking feedback on proposed changes to its health technology assessment methods, and processes.

The consultation is the culmination of the most wide-ranging and comprehensive review NICE has ever carried out, which has involved health system partners as well as industry, healthcare professionals, academia and patients.

The proposed changes signal how NICE is evolving alongside technological advances in medicines and data synthesis to continue to deliver excellence for patients, the NHS and the life sciences industry.

These changes are aimed at providing greater predictability for industry, greater transparency for stakeholders and enable swift decision making for committees, it says

According to NICE, the over-arching aim of the proposals are to provide:

  • Earlier access to valuable new innovative treatments.
  • More equitable access to treatments for those with severe diseases.
  • Greater clarity and predictability of health technology assessment outcomes.
  • Enhanced flexibility in the use of a comprehensive evidence base, including use of real-world data.
  • Support for the life sciences vision of making the UK a more attractive place for life sciences companies to succeed and grow.

Professor Gillian Leng CBE, NICE chief executive, said: “As NICE grows in importance for the health service in England, so do expectations from all our stakeholders for what our methods and processes can do for them. Chief among these is how we can reflect and enable the broader vision of the life sciences industry, patients and the service for accelerated access to innovative health technologies while managing risk and ensuring the NHS gets value for money.

“Taken together, these proposals will bolster the ability of NICE to support access to valuable innovative technologies that bring health benefits for patients and good value to the NHS – staying robust, efficient and future-proof to meet the challenges of advances in health technologies.”

NICE has also today published proposals for changes to the way topics across its medicines, medical devices, interventional procedures and diagnostics programmes are selected.

These proposals, which are also the subject of public consultation, include the creation of a single topic selection oversight panel to replace three different groups to select topics for NICE guidance.

This aims to make topic selection cohesive, clearer and provide consistent decision making. It is also proposed that topic selection decisions will be routinely published on the NICE website.

Meindert Boysen, deputy chief executive and director of the Centre for Health Technology Evaluation at NICE, said: “Operating at the interface between the world in which new treatments are developed and the NHS in which they are used, NICE occupies a unique position in managing the lifecycle of innovative health technologies.

“Our methods and processes are central to an internationally attractive life sciences offer in which we work collaboratively with our partners across the regulatory and life-sciences landscape on speeding up access to promising innovative new health technologies, including through the Cancer Drugs Fund, Innovative Licensing and Access Pathway, the forthcoming Innovative Medicines Fund and activities of the Accelerated Access Collaborative such as the MedTech Funding Mandate.

“Ensuring that our methods and processes are clear, transparent and predictable, these proposals further emphasise our commitment to making the journey for promising new health technologies even faster, and patient access fairer.”

Find more on NICE’s plans here.

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  1. Pingback: New UK centre to speed development of health technology

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