The Department of Health and Social Care has today announced the launch of the Innovative Medicines Fund (IMF). Through the new fund, £340 million is to be made available to purchase promising, potentially life-saving new medicines and fast-track them to patients. The fund will provide access to new drugs while further real-world evidence is collected to inform a final decision by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) on whether the treatment is clinically and cost-effective to offer more widely.
The IMF builds on the success of the reformed Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF) which, according to the Department, has provided over the past five years more than 80,000 people access to life-extending drugs which might otherwise not have been available for years.
Commenting, Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid, said: “I want NHS patients to be the first in the world to access the most promising and revolutionary treatments that could extend or save their lives.
“The launch of the Innovative Medicines Fund delivers another manifesto pledge and will fast-track cutting-edge medicines to adults and children to give people renewed hope for a better future”.
With the CDF, a total of £680 million (£340 million each for the IMF and CDF) has now been ringfenced to fast-track new medicines to patients.
Notably, all medicines made available through the IMF and CDF will have been approved by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and recommended as suitable for the IMF/CDF by NICE.