Pharmaceutical policies in the long run: Reflections on 60th anniversary of Hinchliffe Report

11 November 2019, Merton College, Oxford

In June 1957, the British government tasked a committee, led by Sir Henry Hinchliffe, to investigate rising pharmaceutical expenditure following the introduction of the NHS. The report was published in 1959. This November, the Health Economics Research Centre (HERC), part of the Nuffield Department of Population Health (NDPH) at the University of Oxford, is organising a symposium to mark the 60th anniversary of the report’s publication.

The report made various landmark recommendations including:

  • Improvements in the training of General Practitioners to understand evidence regarding the use of new drugs and the economics of prescribing;
  • Routine conduct of clinical trials to assess drugs, with results published in an independent prescribers’ journal;
  • Development of an expert body that would be informed by research on economic and social aspects of the NHS;
  • An examination of the economics of drug development, marketing and pharmacy to ensure efficiency and equity in prescribing.

Sixty years on, what has changed? Do we face similar challenges today? How have we been able to address these challenges? What long-term recommendations to address the current challenges could be made to the government today?

The symposium will discuss these and other questions, with confirmed speakers from the Institute for Fiscal Studies, NHS England, the Office for Health Economics, and the Universities of Oxford, London, Bournemouth and York.

All interested in attending should contact Philip Clarke (philip.clarke@ndph.ox.ac.uk).

Plus ça change: pharmaceutical spending in the NHS

References from scientific journals

References from newspapers

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