NICE trials new proportionate approach to increase the capacity of technology appraisals
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UK: NICE trials new proportionate approach to increase the capacity of their technology appraisals


In a recent blog shared on the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) website, Jenniffer Prescott, Programme Director of Health Technology Appraisal (HTA) Process and Operations, lays out how NICE are trialling a new, ‘proportionate approach’ to the technology appraisals. The aim of this trial is to increase capacity, with a goal of a 20% increase by 2023-24.

According to Jenniffer, not all new treatments are currently fitting into the existing technology appraisal processes. Some treatments are taking up notably larger proportions of NICE’s time and resources, which risks the delay of relatively simpler appraisals due to lack of capacity. Thus, a new, proportionate approach should ensure NICE are using resources most appropriately, so that patients can continue to access promising treatments.

The new approach will allow NICE to differentiate their appraisal processes, providing a clear route for different types of treatment. This will let NICE:

  • Apply a ‘light-touch, faster’ approach to evaluations for simple, low-risk treatments, e.g., licence extensions, or those in disease areas NICE are very familiar with
  • Dedicate more time and resource to complex treatments that require bespoke, detailed attention

As a first step, NICE is running pilots for the ‘light-touch’ evaluations to learn how these might work in the future. In parallel with this, NICE are developing a HTA Lab. The HTA Lab will offer NICE space to ‘design, test and co-create’ new HTA methods and processes. These new methods and processes will inform the new proportionate approach, as well as feed into other potential evolutions at NICE.

Sources:, Increasing the capacity of our technology appraisals – the proportionate way, 15th June 2022.

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