Innovative Medicines Fund launched to improve treatment access for rare conditions

2 mins read

Monday 20 June 2022

Tags: rare conditions, NICE, nhs, innovative medicines fund, genetic conditions, diagnosis, treatment

NHS England and NICE have announced the launch of the Innovative Medicines Fund (IMF) following an open consultation.

What is the IMF?

The IMF is a ringfenced fund that will speed up access to promising new treatments. NHS England will now have funds for patients to access medicines for which more data might be needed before a normal funding decision can be made.

The fund will have a budget of £340 million a year and will run alongside the existing Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF), which has a similar budget.

How will the IMF help?

Getting approval for treatments for rare and genetic conditions can be slow and challenging, because the number of patients affected by a single condition is so small.

The IMF could offer a solution by allowing patients access to innovative and potentially life-saving drugs almost immediately. Another advantage is that the scheme will increase the amount of data available to NICE to evaluate the affordability and effectiveness of the treatment.

The IMF will potentially improve access to specialist care, treatment and drugs for people living with rare conditions, which is one of the four priorities of the UK Rare Diseases Framework.

Similar schemes currently operate in Scotland and Wales.

Looking for advice on rare conditions?

Visit our rare conditions page for information on getting support for your child and your family.

Our A-Z of Medical Conditions has information on hundreds on conditions, including information on symptoms and possible treatments. It also includes details for support groups, which can be an invaluable source of condition-specific information and support.

You can also read all about diagnosis and how to deal with common concerns about your child’s wellbeing.