Department of Health written question – answered on 2nd November 2015.

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Photo of Baroness Masham of Ilton Baroness Masham of Ilton Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, to date, how many patients have commenced treatment under NHS England's commissioning policy for the treatment of cirrhosis in adults with hepatitis C, and how much that commissioning policy has cost.

Photo of Lord Prior of Brampton Lord Prior of Brampton The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health

NHS England has invested in two policies enabling access to some of the new treatments (in advance of the publication of National Institute for Health and Care Excellence technology appraisals) for patients with hepatitis C with the greatest clinical need.

NHS England’s Interim Clinical Commissioning Policy Statement of April 2014 provided an Early Access Scheme for around 1,000 patients with decompensated cirrhosis. Then in June 2015, NHS England extended that policy so the next group of patients with the greatest clinical need, those with cirrhosis, could also benefit from the new Direct Acting Antivirals. A copy of both of these policies has been attached.

Between publication of the cirrhosis policy in June and 19 October, NHS England received over 1,900 notifications of decisions to treat under the policy. These notifications are submitted by treating clinicians and confirm that patients meet the policy criteria.

In order to confirm the actual cost of this policy, NHS England needs to complete a process of validating treatment notifications against actual trust reported activity and invoicing data on dispensed drugs. These data sources are submitted at different times and so an accurate assessment of the cost of the policy to date will not be able to be possible until the end of the year. Any data shared on the cost of the policy will need to observe commercial in confidence pricing agreements.

Based on preliminary modelling, NHS England set aside £190 million in 2015-16 for the treatment of hepatitis C.

Sofosbuvir Policy Statement (PDF Document, 444.08 KB)
Hep C Policy Statement (PDF Document, 468.76 KB)

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