John Hemming (Birmingham, Yardley, Liberal Democrat)
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate she has made of the effects on costs to the public purse of prescribing Simvastatin instead of Atorvastatin or other branded statins; and what the timetable is for Simvastatin to be prescribed instead of branded statins.
Caroline Flint (Minister of State (Public Health), Department of Health; Don Valley, Labour)
The NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement recently published the "Better Care, Better Value" indicators for the second quarter of this financial year. The statins indicator shows that if every primary care trust (PCT) achieved levels of prescribing of lower cost statins similar to the top quarter of PCTs then £84.7 million could be released for patient care. There are no targets, but we expect PCTs and clinicians to be aware that they can help treat more patients by prescribing one of the lower cost statins where it is clinically appropriate.