UK Blood Cancer Patient Group Wants More Price Flexibility
An alliance of blood cancer charities has called for multi-indication and combination pricing to be introduced in the UK as part of a future pricing and access deal. The group also requested a transparent and formal way of involving patients as the government and industry negotiate a successor to the Voluntary Scheme for Branded Medicines Pricing and Access, which is due to end in 2023.
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In 2022, a total of five companies chose to exit the UK’s voluntary scheme that manages branded medicines spending. The departure of two big firms – AbbVie and Lilly – is seen as a deliberate tactic to send a clear signal to government that the scheme is not working for industry and is jeopardizing investment and access to medicines in the UK.
With the clock ticking on UK drug pricing negotiations, it is still unclear whether even high-level terms of a new voluntary deal will be agreed in time.
The pharmaceutical industry says financial uncertainties are a key reason why the English Innovative Medicines Fund (IMF) – offering the potential for time-limited funding for promising non-cancer treatments where benefits are uncertain at launch - has still not been used a year after it was put in place. Industry wants the National Health Service to share the financial risk of taking part in the fund.