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NICE Medical Technologies Evaluation Programme welcomes new external assessment centre

The Medical Technologies Evaluation Programme at NICE today welcomes the appointment of a new external assessment centre to support its guidance production and associated processes. The joint external assessment centre, a collaboration between Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Medical Physics Department and York Health Economics Consortium, has been commissioned by NICE to provide independent assessment of the evidence for medical technologies and related economic analysis. It will also have a central role in developing and facilitating independent research products to assist manufacturers when NICE medical technology or diagnostics guidance recommends that further research should be carried out.

Professor Carole Longson, Director of the Centre for Health Technology Evaluation at NICE, said "We're delighted to welcome the new joint external assessment centre based at Newcastle and York. Their input to the production of NICE medical technology guidance will be essential, providing independent assessment of the evidence available for devices going through the NICE evaluation process. NICE medical technology guidance looks at whether a device offers benefits to the patient and NHS at a lower cost compared with similar products, or increased benefits for equal cost.

"An important feature of both the NICE Medical Technologies Evaluation and Diagnostics Assessment programmes is expertise and capacity for facilitating the development of further evidence. Where the relevant NICE advisory committee identifies that a technology has considerable potential but insufficient evidence to support widespread adoption across the NHS, it may make recommendations for further research. In such cases, the external assessment centre will play a key role in facilitating the development of further relevant evidence. We look forward to working with the centre, and benefitting from their combined technical and economics expertise in supporting the development of robust guidance for the NHS."

ENDS

Notes to Editors

About the Medical Technologies Evaluation Programme external assessment centres

1. The external assessment centres have been appointed following a public procurement process earlier in 2011, and are chosen for their knowledge and expertise in the evaluation of medical technologies. Each centre will each provide a comprehensive range of services. One other centre, CEDAR - which is an NHS evaluation centre and part of Cardiff and Vale University Local Health Board - has been commissioned so far as part of this process to provide an external assessment service.

About the Medical Technologies Evaluation Programme

2. Established by NICE in 2009, the focus of this new area of work is specifically on the evaluation of innovative medical technologies, including devices and diagnostics. The types of products which might be included are medical devices that deliver treatment such as those implanted during surgical procedures, technologies that give greater independence to patients, and diagnostic devices or tests used to detect or monitor medical conditions. The independent Medical Technology Advisory Committee has two core remits: selecting medical technologies for evaluation by NICE guidance programmes and also developing medical technologies guidance itself. The guidance applies to the NHS in England, and is not mandatory.

More information is available at http://www.nice.org.uk/MT.

3. Seven pieces of NICE medical technology guidance have been published to date. The most recent guidance is on the Inditherm mattress to prevent inadvertent hypothermia during surgery. The estimated average NHS cost saving for the Inditherm mattress is in the region of £9800 per operating theatre each year in addition to practical benefits for patients and hospital staff.

Information on NICE medical technology guidance is at http://guidance.nice.org.uk/MT.

About NICE

4. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is the independent organisation responsible for providing national guidance and standards on the promotion of good health and the prevention and treatment of ill health.

5. NICE produces guidance in three areas of health:

  • public health - guidance on the promotion of good health and the prevention of ill health for those working in the NHS, local authorities and the wider public and voluntary sector
  • health technologies - guidance on the use of new and existing medicines, treatments, medical technologies (including devices and diagnostics) and procedures within the NHS
  • clinical practice - guidance on the appropriate treatment and care of people with specific diseases and conditions within the NHS.

6. NICE produces standards for patient care:

  • quality standards - these reflect the very best in high quality patient care, to help healthcare practitioners and commissioners of care deliver excellent services
  • Quality and Outcomes Framework - NICE develops the clinical and health improvement indicators in the QOF, the Department of Health scheme which rewards GPs for how well they care for patients

7. NICE provides advice and support on putting NICE guidance and standards into practice through its implementation programme, and it collates and accredits high quality health guidance, research and information to help health professionals deliver the best patient care through NHS Evidence.

This page was last updated: 20 October 2011

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Accessibility | Cymraeg | Freedom of information | Vision Impaired | Contact Us | Glossary | Data protection | Copyright | Disclaimer | Terms and conditions

Copyright 2014 National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. All rights reserved.