New HSCB body will hear requests for non-approved drugs for seriously ill patients

Fri, 12/06/2020 - 13:41 -- Editor

Health Minister Robin Swann, MLA, has welcomed the establishment of the Individual Funding Request (IFR) Regional Scrutiny Committee (RSC) which today commenced decision making regarding the availability of unapproved drugs in Northern Ireland.

The Committee was established after a review and reformation of the Individual funding request process. The RSC has been set up under the Health and Social Care Board.

Minister Swann said: “The policy document which was published this week outlines the conditions and criteria under which hospital consultants, on behalf of their patients, can make an application to the RSC for treatment not normally commissioned by the Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) under defined conditions. This policy applies to any patient who is in circumstances where the HSCB is the responsible commissioner for health and social care for that person.

“The establishment of the RSC places clinical expertise at the heart of this sensitive and important decision making process ensuring that all IFR applications are subject to consistent clinical input and peer review.”

Together with the decision to support access to cancer drugs fund, therapies patients here now have greater access to innovative new treatments.

This policy will apply to patients eligible for health and social care services only.