Lay Summary

In the UK, new drugs are assessed by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). NICE assesses the health benefits of new drugs and their costs to see whether they represent good value for money and should be recommended for use in the NHS.

NICE, NHS England, and NHS Improvement are currently undertaking a project to assess the feasibility of extending the approach that NICE takes to antibiotics. Antibiotics have features which make assessing their benefits and costs more complex. EEPRU has previously provided recommendations about how the approaches usually used by NICE can be adapted for antibiotics: Framework for value assessment of new antimicrobials. Implications of alternative funding arrangements for NICE appraisal. One recommendation of this work is that payments to manufacturers should be linked to the long-term health benefits of the new drug across all potential beneficiaries rather than the number of prescriptions of the drug.

This project explores what should be considered when setting payments to manufacturers for new antibiotics. We will consider the impact of payments on NHS costs and what this means for the ability of the health service to deliver other important care. We will also consider the likely impact of payment levels on the development of new antibiotics in the future. Finally, we will consider how the level of uncertainty around the benefits of new antibiotics should impact payments. Our work will provide information about these different effects of payment arrangements and therefore help to inform payment negotiations for new antibiotics.