SW Peninsula Health Technology Commissioning Group


The four Primary Care Trusts in the Peninsula have combined to ensure that there is a single and agreed approach to drugs and health technologies prior to the introduction to NICE guidance or in the absence of NICE guidance. The aim of the group is a committment to provide the best use of healthcare resources for patients in the South West.

We will also strive to deliver equity and fairness to all patients and to reduce post code variations in prescribing. The Penninsula Health Technology Commissioning Group has been set up to take decisions and inform when NICE has yet to give guidance. This builds on the existing systems which each Primary Care Trust already has in place to work with clinical staff to make sure patients get the right treatment for thier condition.

New drugs or technologies may not always be the right drug or intervention as there may be more tested, effective drugs which may have less side effects or better safety profiles. New technologies may be more expensive to acquire but represent good value for money for the NHS and should therefore be supported. On the other hand they may offer only limited benefit and represent poor value for money. The Peninsula Health Technology Commissioning Group takes into account value for money, rather than total absolute cost, considerations: the latter being an issue for each of the primary care trusts.

Existing Primary Care Trust Exceptional Treatment Panels and Appeals Panels processes will still operate along side the Peninsula Health Technology Commissioning Group.

The process involves an assessment of the drugs or health technology by an expert group of professionals which will include, on each occasion, representation from the specialist clincians working locally in the area of medicine under consideration. The process will seek input from patient representative groups. The group will review the available evidence, its place in therapy, and an analysis to determine clinical and cost effectiveness working within an ethical framework. This will assist in the decision making process in order to determine its use in the Peninsula Health Community. If more evidence becomes available before further NICE guidance is published then the decision will be revised in light of this new information. The Peninsula Health Technology Commissioning Group considers the analysis of clinical and value for money data from this Group and will make a decision how this drug or health technology will be used in the following Trusts:

  • NHS Plymouth
  • NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly
  • NHS Devon
  • Torbay Care Trust

Processes for local decision making and adopting policies on the use of medicines and other treatments are currently being reviewed in light of NHS Directions 01 April 2009.

For more information please visit the Devon PCT website: www.devonpct.nhs.uk

See below for the decisions made

Last updated by: Carol Webb on 08-02-2011 13:17