Patient Access Scheme – Clinical Pharmacist View David Thomson, Lead Pharmacist, YCN Chair, BOPA
CNPF Report - Research question? What has been the impact of implementing risk sharing schemes to improve access to cancer medicines in the NHS?
Aims and objectives • To define reality – who is doing what? • To obtain a general rating and estimate of administration time for 4 schemes. • To assess the impact on pharmacy departments. • To obtain comments and suggestions for improvement from scheme users.
Study design Methods Initial Findings 37/131 trusts responded – 28% Covered 756 patients • Questionnaire using online tool Survey Monkey during summer 2009. • Open to all BOPA membership • More than one reply per trust allowed • 4 schemes - Sunitinib, Bortezomib, Cetuximab, Erlotinib • All schemes in operation at least 12 months between 2007 and 2009
Limitations • Low response rate • People with issues are more likely to respond • Not all respondents answered all the questions. • Only views of Pharmacy Staff represented – not clinicians, finance, PCT views. • From this talks perspective – views of pharmacy staff weren’t seperated into clinical, procurement etc
Consultants were initially very good at completing form. Enthusiasm wore off after about 6 months. It isn't in anyone's job description to chase the clinician to complete the form so it rarely gets done. Easy to apply. Free stock invoices easier to manage. Cost per drug evens out. OK provided all drug used by one speciality so see benefit of free stock Unworkable scheme. Cannot show true cost per patient as free stock supplied retrospectively. Also free stock is supplied in the form of a credit note against a previous invoice. Cannot separate out free stock from normal supplies. Suntinib This scheme has the first cycle free and then a 5% discount on list price. The scheme required each patient to be registered with a form sent to manufacturers and free stock supplied for the first cycle.
Relies on good communication. Pharmacists are in clinic and have access to patient letters. If a patient hasn't responded, the refund is claimed Requires huge investment of time to monitor patients and ensure refund timescales met. As with sunitinib issues around assigning the rebate to patients and adjusting the drug budget/ expenditure reports is a nightmare There is a lack of continuity in the clinic making it a challenge to identify nonresponding patients as a result, the pharmacy team now remind the MDT at the start of cycle 4 of the need to assess response etc. This is a step in the right direction but still potentially misses patients who do not get as far as 4 cycles treatment (for whatever reason) When the consultants want to initiate the treatment, we need to request them filling in the PBR (audit) form forward to PCT for approval. Then, we wait for confirmation from PCT to go ahead. When the patient started the treatment, e.g. Velcade, you have to keep track of the number of cycles, if they have stopped and does it entitled for VRS scheme. Then, asking for Serum M protein to be done, chasing up the consultant the claim form. It is a time wasting process. Bortezomib Response measured by (serum M protein) after 4 cycles. If patient hasn’t responded a ‘refund’ can be claimed, but all claims must be made within 60 days. Refund can be cash, credit note, or stock replacement
CNPF - Conclusions • Pharmacy bears brunt of burden BUT • Rely on patient level data which isn’t collected as standard in the NHS • Retrospective rebates can conflict with NHS financial flows (which are different locally) • Outcome based schemes take longer to administer, are preferred less BUT have less reported problems refunding payers. • Schemes with upfront discount preferred BUT payers still not getting refunded (<50%) • 73% of services can’t take any more schemes • Dedicated post needed to administer schemes
Conclusions • Is PASLU actually set up to solve the problem? • Can anyone else? • NHS issues – can we be more consistent in terms of local requirements? • Commercial issues - Can Pharmaceutical companies work together? • Are politicians willing to accept that there is a problem without headlines? • These issues won’t go away and will impact on the success or failure of: • The proposed £200m drug fund • The delivery of value based pricing