Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity, has welcomed plans to use dementia as a test case for the government’s Accelerated Access Review. An interim report from the ongoing review, published today, has highlighted the need for its final recommendations to enable new dementia treatments to be delivered to patients as quickly as possible.
The review, which began earlier this year, is considering how to speed up access to new drugs, medical technology and diagnostic tools. Chaired by Sir Hugh Taylor, the review is examining how the UK’s healthcare and regulatory systems should respond to advances in technology that could transform the treatments available for a range of conditions, including dementia. The interim report outlines five key proposals for the second stage of the review to focus on:
- A stronger voice for patients at all stages
- A new approach to the way emerging treatments and technologies become part of the UK’s health system
- Support for researchers who are developing potential new treatments and technologies
- The NHS to support and adopt new advances in medicine quickly
- Improvements to the way new treatments and technologies are commissioned, nationally and locally
The review will also consider how any proposed changes could apply to new treatments for dementia, as well as cancer and some rare diseases.
Hilary Evans, Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity, said:
“We welcome this initial report – it’s encouraging to see that patients are at the heart of this vital review and that dementia will be considered as a test case, something Alzheimer’s Research UK has called for. With 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK, the number of people who stand to benefit from new treatments is vast.
“In the 12 years since the last dementia treatment was licensed in the UK, there have been huge advances in medical research and in our understanding of diseases like Alzheimer’s. Now is a critical time – dementia research is making progress and we must be ready for any potential new treatments that may be coming through the pipeline. The Accelerated Access Review is a golden opportunity to ensure that people in the UK can access the best available healthcare and medicines; that must include people with dementia.”