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MPs take aim at ‘over-budget’ cancer fund

A report from the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee is calling for data on whether the Cancer Drugs Fund is meeting its objectives.

The Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government established the fund in 2010 so that patients could get access to cancer drugs not available on the NHS. These were mainly medicines that the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) said were not sufficiently cost-effective.

In their report, published on 5 February, the cross-party group of MPs say that “the Department of Health and NHS England do not have the data needed to assess the impact of the fund on patient outcomes, such as extending patients’ lives, or to demonstrate whether this is a good use of taxpayers’ money”.

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