Intended for healthcare professionals


Open letter raises concerns about NICE guidance on statins

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 11 June 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g3937
  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. 1London

A group of leading doctors have written an open letter to David Haslam, chairman of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), and to the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, raising serious concerns about the latest draft guidance on statins.1

The letter was signed by Richard Thompson, president of the Royal College of Physicians, and Clare Gerada, former chairwoman of the Royal College of General Practitioners. The letter said, “We urge you to withdraw the current guidance on statins for people at low risk of cardiovascular disease until all the data are made available. The potential consequences of not doing so are worrying: harm to many patients over many years, and the loss of public and professional faith in NICE as an independent assessor. Public interests need always to be put before other interests, particularly [those of] Pharma.”

The draft guidance from NICE, published in February, recommended lowering the threshold for treatment with statins to include people who had a 10% or higher 10 year risk of developing cardiovascular disease.2 3 Consultation on the guidance closed on 26 March, and final guidance is due to be published …

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