5.1 The Secretary of State and the Welsh Assembly Minister for Health and Social Services have issued directions to the NHS on implementing NICE technology appraisal guidance. When a NICE technology appraisal recommends use of a drug or treatment, or other technology, the NHS must provide funding and resources for it within 3 months of the guidance being published. If the Department of Health issues a variation to the 3-month funding direction, details will be available on the NICE website. The NHS is not required to fund treatments that are not recommended by NICE.
5.2 When NICE recommends a treatment 'as an option', the NHS must make sure it is available within the period set out in the paragraph above. This means that, if a patient has chronic lymphocytic leukaemia and the doctor responsible for their care thinks that rituximab is the right treatment, it should be available for use, in line with NICE's recommendations.
5.3 NICE has developed tools to help organisations implement this guidance (listed below).
Costing report and costing template to estimate the savings and costs associated with implementation.
Audit support for monitoring local practice.