Scottish body assesses drugs at a fraction of cost of NICE, its chairman says

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: (Published 24 June 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b2560
  1. Colin Wright
  1. 1Edinburgh

    Scotland’s system for assessing new drugs is quicker, cheaper, and more efficient than its counterpart in England and produces broadly similar results, the chairman of the Scottish Medicines Consortium has said.

    Ken Paterson, a consultant physician for NHS Greater Glasgow, told delegates at a conference on rationing in the NHS, which was organised by the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, that the consortium assesses all new drugs within 18 weeks of submission. He added that the organisation costs less than £1m (€1.2m; $1.6m) a year to operate, that it assesses and produces advice on 100% of all new drugs, and that its assessments match those of the National …

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