Making the process of getting transformative technologies to patients quicker, cheaper and easier for innovators and the NHS.

The government and its partners aim to bring forward patient access to selected, highly beneficial and affordable innovations.

To achieve this we're:

Contact us

If you have an enquiry, email the AAC Secretariat at


Our aims

  • For the NHS to be one of the most pro-innovation healthcare systems in the world, and for it to be seen as such by patients and industry.
  • That innovation will be delivered at a price that industry and the NHS think is affordable and fair.

Introducing an accelerated pathway to market

The AAP streamlines the current route to market. It will deliver faster access and support for uptake by:

  • horizon scanning for breakthrough products
  • streamlining the route from market authorisation through to patient use
  • generating real-world evidence in addition to clinical trials data
  • negotiating price and the potential for flexible arrangements earlier
  • supporting adoption and diffusion through the Academic Health Science Networks and Pathway Transformation Fund.

Identifying highly transformative innovations

We'll work with partners and industry to identify potential technologies using a horizon scanning process. This process considers:

  • improvements to patient outcomes
  • increasing system efficiency
  • barriers to uptake.

We'll provide further detail on the transformative criteria and process for selecting products to enter the AAP shortly.

About the AAC

What is it?

A unique partnership consisting of representatives of healthcare landscape organisations and the health technology industry.

The AAC focuses on aligning activities to speed up getting highly transformative technologies to NHS patients.

It brings together:

  • NHS England
  • Department of Health and Social Care
  • Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
  • National Institute for Health and Care Excellence
  • Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
  • NHS Improvement
  • Academic Health Science Networks
  • A representative from the pharmaceutical industry
  • A representative from the medical technologies industry
  • A representative from the diagnostics industry
  • A representative from the digital health industry
  • National Voices (representing patients)
  • Association of Royal Medical Colleges (representing clinicians).

The partnership secretariat is hosted by NICE.

What's our role?

Our core role is to select the transformational products for the AAP. These will be from a range of pharmaceutical, medical devices, diagnostic and digital products.

We'll agree a clear set of selection criteria. Once selected, we'll oversee the acceleration activities to speed the product to market.

We'll evaluate the impact of the AAP and the industry’s response to it. We also have a role in helping to set wider priorities for innovation within the NHS.

The AAC will sit alongside the Life Sciences Council. This is a partnership between government and industry to provide strategic oversight of the future of UK Life Sciences, including delivery of the sector deals. The AAC will ensure an effective and joined-up approach to the NHS collaboration strand of the Life Sciences Industrial Strategy.

Why was the AAC created?

In Autumn 2016, the independently-chaired Accelerated Access Review set out a vision of getting the best technologies to patients more quickly and cheaply, in a system that's quick to adopt innovation.

The government's response to the review set out how they will improve patient access to breakthrough technologies and treatments. Key elements include:

  • Developing the AAP to bring breakthrough products to market and then patients as quickly as possible.
  • £86 million government funding to support innovators and the NHS in overcoming barriers to getting new innovative technologies to patients quickly.
  • Improving NHS England commercial capacity and capability to achieve better value for the NHS and innovators.

AAC membership

Professor the Lord Darzi of Denham OM KBE PC FRS has been appointed the new chair of the AAC. Further information can be found here.

Lord Darzi has an outstanding balance of experience and knowledge in this sector. We look forward to him building on the foundations laid for the AAC under the chairmanship of Sir Andrew Witty.

AAC meetings

The first meeting was held on 31 January 2018. This was chaired by Sir Andrew Witty*.

We discussed:

  • the composition of the AAP product portfolio
  • the criteria for a transformative product
  • the horizon scanning process.

At this meeting AAC partners and industry were asked to undertake a horizon scanning exercise, with a focus on later stage products which face barriers to adoption in the NHS. The products identified will be considered at the next AAC board meeting. This exercise has also been used to refine the process and collective working of the AAC going forward.

The next meeting of the AAC will be chaired by Lord Darzi in late summer. The AAC will meet in late summer to launch the Accelerated Access Pathway and will consider the first group of products as part of their discussion.

*Sir Andrew has since been appointed as CEO of Optum, part of United Healthcare and has stepped down from his role as AAC chair.