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Home Industry News NHS care will remain for drug payers

NHS care will remain for drug payers

5th November 2008

NHS care will not be withdrawn for patients who choose to pay for drugs they would not otherwise get free from the service, the government has confirmed.

Health secretary Alan Johnson said patients would have medications made available for them to buy that are not available on prescription.

There will be a special focus on drugs for terminally ill patients.

Mr Johnson said the NHS will not withdraw treatment from those who choose to receive private care but stressed the paid-for treatment should complement NHS care and also be carried out in a private setting and not subsidised.

Proposals by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) have set out a new system for appraising expensive drugs designed to help patients with severe illness.

NICE will work with the Department of Health (DoH) to speed up this appraisal process and give patients “faster and more consistent access” to new therapies, the DoH said.

Mr Johnson said the government measures and NICE proposals meant patients would have wider access to treatment.

“This issue was causing distress to patients and their relatives,” he continued.

“Patients and the public can be confident that from today there will be greater clarity, greater fairness and ? greater access to a wider range of drugs.”

In other recent news, Nice recently issued final guidance on the use of drugs to prevent osteoporotic fractures in postmenopausal women

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