Wednesday, 03 August 2011 09:30

Increased approval for applications to the Cancer Drugs Fund between April and June 2011

cdfIn follow up to our report Funding Cancer Drugs: An evaluation of the impact of policies to improve access to cancer treatments, the Rarer Cancers Foundation (RCF) has published ten quarterly briefings on the operation of the Cancer Drugs Fund at strategic health authority (SHA) level for April to June 2011.

Key findings are that:

  • Almost 1,800 patients benefitted from the CDF between April and June
  • There was an increased approval rate for applications to the Fund in almost all SHAs compared to the first six months of the Fund
  • There is a concerning disparity in the time it takes for SHAs to publish data on the use of the Fund – in some instances data were available in July, other SHAs have only recently managed to publish these data.

In March, the Department of Health issued guidance on the operation of the CDF making the publication of up to date information on the use of the CDF mandatory.It stated that SHAs should establish audit arrangements to monitor the use of the funding that has been made available and to publish data on the number of applications to the Fund and how much of the Fund has been spent on a regular basis.  However, to date, the publication of this information by SHAs has been variable and therefore patients and the public have been unable to obtain information about how the CDF is being used locally.

The provision of timely and accurate data on use of the CDF is important in enabling SHAs to manage the allocation of funding, demonstrate that the funding is being used in line with regional arrangements and improve the evidence on how these drugs perform in real-world clinical practice.

The RCF is committed to ensuring that healthcare professionals, patients and the public are able to access information about how the CDF is being used in each SHA and we will, therefore, be publishing these SHA level bulletins on a quarterly basis, data permitting.

NHS East Midlands

NHS East of England

NHS London

NHS North East

NHS North West

NHS South Central

NHS South East Coast

NHS South West

NHS West Midlands

NHS Yorkshire and Humber