Plans to boost the joint assessment of medicines  

A draft law to be voted on Wednesday aims to avoid duplicating national assessments to determine a medicine’s added value and help EU countries decide on pricing.

Health professionals, patients and institutions need to know whether or not a new medicine or medical device is an improvement compared to other products on the market. Health technology assessments (HTA) therefore aim to identify their added value and to help EU countries decide on pricing and reimbursement. HTAs are, however, under the exclusive competence of member states, leading to an unnecessary duplication of assessments.

The new law aims to boost cooperation between member states in the field of HTA, by laying out the procedure to carry out voluntary joint assessments. Provisions cover aspects such as rules for sharing data, setting up coordination groups, avoiding conflicts of interest among experts, and publishing the results of the joint work.

Background

MEPs highlight that there are many barriers to accessing medicine and innovative technologies in the EU, the main ones being the lack of new treatments for certain diseases and the high price of medicines, which in many cases do not have an added therapeutic value.

Procedure: codecision

2018/0018(COD)

Debate: Monday, 1 October

Vote: Wednesday, 3 October