The government, NHS England and the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has begun the negotiations for a new voluntary scheme for branded medicines pricing on Thursday (4 May).
A new voluntary scheme is expected to take effect from 1 January 2024, replacing the current scheme which came into force in 2019 and ends on 31 December 2023
In their first meeting, the government, NHS England and industry – represented by the ABPI –expected to agree to a shared negotiation aim of working toward a mutually beneficial agreement that supports better patient outcomes and a healthier population, a financially sustainable NHS, and UK economic growth.
Health Minister, Will Quince, said: “These negotiations will ensure a new scheme continues to deliver value for money by providing significant savings for our health services, securing access to innovative lifesaving drugs for NHS patients, and helping to reduce waiting times – one of the Prime Minister’s 5 priorities.
The current voluntary scheme supports investment in NHS services and saves billions of pounds for the NHS, while also promoting innovations and a successful life sciences sector.
It’s vitally important that the successor to the current scheme delivers for the taxpayer, patients, the NHS, and life sciences.
Richard Torbett, Chief Executive at the ABPI, said: “These negotiations provide an opportunity to secure the UK’s place as a global leader in life science research and medical innovation while also ensuring the best outcomes for UK patients and a thriving economy.
Working together, we can boost UK science and create the conditions for innovative medicines to deliver their true value as an investment in the nation’s health, wealth, and productivity.
Sir Hugh Taylor, who chaired the Accelerated Access Review in 2014 to bring innovative technologies to the NHS, was appointed last month as Chief Negotiations Advisor for the VPAS scheme.
Sir Hugh Taylor, said: “The future voluntary scheme must continue to benefit the NHS and give its patients access to the best medicines, while supporting our life sciences sector.
I’m looking forward to reaching an agreement which not only benefits the NHS but will also encourage the pharmaceutical sector to continue investing in the UK.”