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New medication could be funded

New medication could be funded

Wednesday 06 June 2018

New medication could be funded

Wednesday 06 June 2018

The States of Guernsey have backed calls for a review of the way new medicines are funded for local patients.

The issue was discussed as part of the updated Policy and Resources Plan which was debated by the States yesterday.

It was proposed in an amendment lodged by Deputy Heidi Soulsby, the Health and Social Care President, and seconded by Deputy Rhian Tooley.

The amendment asked for permission for the Committee for Health & Social Care to be enabled to undertake a review of the processes surrounding the funding of new drugs or medical treatments. The deputies said under this review, a number of issues would be considered, including the merits of whether new drugs or medical treatments should be funded to ensure that a consistent approach is used across all decision-making bodies.

Both HSC and the Committee for Employment & Social Security’s Prescribing Benefit Advisory Committee will be involved in the review, which was supported by the majority of the States.

During the debate, Deputy Peter Roffey criticised the current situation - which means some drugs which are approved for use in the UK are not available to local patients. 

Peter Roffey

Pictured: Deputy Peter Roffey

Deputy Roffey said he knows of patients lying in hospital beds in Southampton, where doctors know which medicine would help them, but they are unable to prescribe them because they are not on the list of drugs authorised for use by HSC.

A review of that situation will now be carried out to ensure more medicines which have been approved for use by the official body NICE in the UK are also able to be prescribed here. 

Speaking after the debate, Deputy Soulsby said "the amendment builds on what we said we would do as part of the Partnership of Purpose policy letter approved in December, providing more detail on what we would review and by when."

The HSC President said it will also link in with other agreed work streams.

"We will build this work into our prioritisation process later this year and I expect it will be coordinated along with the review we are doing on end of life care.

"My preference will be to provide various options to the States in order that the Assembly can decide how much more it is willing to pay on drugs and treatments."

Pictured top: Deputy Heidi Soulsby



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