Cancer Drugs Fund Application and Approval Rates Continue to Rise


The Rarer Cancers Foundation (RCF) has published the latest quarterly briefings on the operation of the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF) at strategic health authority (SHA) level for July to September 2011.

These follow the first set of briefings produced for the period for April to June 2011 and build on our report Funding Cancer Drugs: An evaluation of the impact of policies to improve access to cancer treatments published in June 2011.


Key findings for July to September are:

  • Over 2,000 patients benefitted from the CDF between July and September – this means during the first year of the CDF, almost 7,000 patients were able to gain access to life-extending cancer drugs that previously would have been made unavailable
  • Applications per 100,000 population have increased nationally between July and September, when compared with the April – June period
  • The number of patients gaining access to treatments through the CDF has also increased across all SHAs.Approval rates were higher for the April - September 2011 period, compared with the preceding six months (October 2010 – March 2011)
  • SHAs are improving their monitoring processes, however some have yet to publish data on the use of the CDF up to the end of September

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.

Please find details on the use of the CDF in your local area below:

NHS East Midlands

NHS East of England

NHS London

NHS South Central

NHS South East Coast

NHS South West

NHS West Midlands

NHS Yorkshire and Humber