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Health Secretary Vaughan Gething today announced the new review panel to undertake a focused, independent review of the Individual Patient Funding Request (IPFR) process in Wales.  

First published:
27 September 2016
Last updated:

This was published under the 2016 to 2021 administration of the Welsh Government

The NHS Wales IPFR process is the mechanism used by all health boards across Wales to make a decision at an individual patient level on access to a treatment not routinely available. Vaughan Gething said: 

 “Following the 2014 IPFR review and the implementation of its recommendations, I agreed the time was right for a new, independent review of the process.  The review will concentrate on the number of panels, the clinical exceptionality criteria and take account of the patient’s perspective. 

“I am pleased to announce today the membership of the group which will be carrying out the review.  The panel is independent of the Welsh Government and encompasses a range of expertise and knowledge.”

Mr. Andrew Blakeman will chair the review panel.  Mr. Blakeman is a chartered accountant and has worked for BP for over 20 years in a variety of senior financial roles.  He will bring a solid customer focused background to the work of the panel.  

The panel comprises five members:

Mr. Irfon Williams
Professor Peter Littlejohns
Professor Phil Routledge OBE
Dr. Ben Thomas
Professor Chris Newdick

The review will examine the evidence of current good practice in Wales, the UK and elsewhere for making individual funding decisions on treatments which are not routinely available.  

The review group will consider the number of IPFR panels in Wales and the clinical exceptionality criteria used to make decisions. It will consider options for improving how the process and subsequent decisions are communicated to patients.  The end result will be a report with practical recommendations for the next steps.  

Vaughan Gething said: 

“Together with the New Treatment Fund, the review of the IPFR process will lead to real change in how patients in Wales can access innovative medicines, and an improvement in the service that patients can expect to receive.”

The review panel has begun their work and will meet for the first time on 6 October.