Individual Funding Request (IFR)

Consultation opened on 25 January 2017. Closing date 19 April 2017.


The Minister is pleased to publish for consultation the proposed reformed individual funding request (IFR) policy which provides access to high cost specialist drugs where there is an agreed clinical need but where the drugs are not fully approved for routine use by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Also published for consultation is a draft user guide in easy read format. The Department of Health is seeking the views of the public and stakeholders on the draft policy and the user guide.

The closing date for consultation has been extended from 7 April to 19 April 2017.


Consultation description

The new policy comes as a result of an evaluation of the IFR process which found that the existing exceptionality criteria should be amended to remove the reference to 95%; the establishment of regional scrutiny committee should be considered to ensure all IFR applications are subject to regionally consistent clinical input which includes peer review and that the existing IFR guidance should be revised to include greater transparency.

The draft policy sets out the criteria and the key features under which IFRs should be considered and provides clarity and guidance on a number of areas relating to an IFR application. The draft user guide will help to provide a clearer, more user friendly explanation of the process.

While the draft policy document and service user guide are out for consultation, the Department of Health will be progressing work to establish the Regional Scrutiny Committee which will be the new body responsible for making recommendations on Individual Funding Requests.

This consultation is seeking views of all stakeholders on the policy.

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