The NHS has saved more than £700 million from the annual medicines bill to reinvest in new treatments as part of the Long Term Plan.
An NHS-wide campaign has supported patients and doctors to maximise the use of ‘generic’ and best value ‘biologic’ treatments to treat conditions including arthritis and cancer. New figures show that the uptake of best value medicines lowered costs to taxpayers by £294 million last year alone, on track to meet its ambitious target of a further £400 million annual savings by 2021.
The drug ‘adalimumab’, which is used for treating arthritis and other diseases, saved £110 million alone thanks to a ‘smart procurement’ after the drug came off patent in 2018. Prior to this, adalimumab was the individual medicine which came at the highest cost to the NHS, with a cost of more than £400 million a year.