Revealed: drug firms funding UK patient groups that lobby for NHS approval of medicines

Observer investigation shows that majority of Nice drug appraisals involve groups financially linked to maker of pharmaceuticals

Shanti Das and Jon Ungoed-Thomas report for The Observer:

“Drug companies are systematically funding grassroots patient groups that lobby the NHS medicines watchdog to approve the rollout of their drugs, the Observer can reveal.

An investigation by the Observer has found that of 173 drug appraisals conducted by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) since April 2021, 138 involved patient groups that had a financial link to the maker of the drug being assessed, or have since received funding.

Often, the financial interests were not clearly disclosed in Nice transparency documents.

Many of the groups that received the payments went on to make impassioned pleas to England’s medicines watchdog calling for treatments to be approved for diseases and illnesses including cancer, heart disease, migraine and diabetes. Others made submissions appealing Nice decisions when medicines were refused for being too expensive …”

You can read more from here.

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