Market Updates

UK trades off faster drug review process, for 2% cap on sales

December, 2018

The UK government along with the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has engaged in a scheme for access and pricing of the branded drug pricing, substituting the Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme. The deal is expected to be finalized and be effective from January 2019. However, the two major details release currently are:


  • All the branded drugs will be subjected to a sales growth cap of 2%, and the pharmaceutical players will be reimbursing the NHS if they exceed the sales limit

  • NICE evaluation of applications on new innovative technology will be finished within six months since the time of application, which is quicker than existing timelines.


Chief executive of ABPI, Mike Thompson stated that: “This agreement is a commitment by the government and the NHS to work with us to support innovation for the benefit of patients. This means that people across the UK should see better and faster access to the most effective new medicines and vaccines.” Regarding sales restrictions, he said: “Under the scheme, the NHS will have absolute certainty that the sales of branded medicines will not grow by more than 2% in any of the next five years – or industry refunds the money. This is a significant contribution by pharmaceutical companies to support the NHS.”

The NHS is expected to save total value of $1.1 billion which is £930 million with this agreement. The growth of NHS investment on the medicine over the past five years has remained 1.1%.

It is also noticed that the UK government has been setting its bonds with the life sciences manufacturers during initial days of November by investing in advanced therapeutics manufacturer. This has facilitated the UK to turn out to be one of the foremost countries in the globe to develop and manufacture chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-t therapy accessible to patients.

– Rikitha K Murthy,
Research Analyst,
Infoholic Research