An article in the BMJ suggests that the 1.2billion cancer drugs fund has not been spent wisely writes Nigel Hawkes in the BMJ , at a time when the NHS is starved of resources for frontline services the Prime Minister continues to blow cash on projects of questionable value …
A total of £1.27bn (€1.7bn; $1.9bn) has so far been spent on the Cancer Drugs Fund in England, but no data exist to show whether it has been spent wisely, the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee says in a new report.1
BMJ 2016; 352 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i755 (Published 05 February 2016)Cite this as: BMJ 2016;352:i755
Despite the Department of Health noting when the fund was set up in 2010 that it was important to collect clinical outcomes from the drugs it pays for, few data exist. The department encouraged NHS trusts to collect data but did not require them to do so. When NHS England took over the fund in April 2014 it made data collection mandatory, but the committee still found gaps for 2014-15, with 93% of records having no summary of outcomes.
The health department and NHS England “have not managed the fund effectively”