QIPP Planning: How To…

…Identify CCG Cost Savings Opportunities using OpenPrescribing.net Every year in the NHS local teams around the country put together “QIPP Plans”. QIPP stands for Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention and is a large scale programme introduced across the NHS to ensure the NHS delivers more for the same funding. We make no comment on the programme itself but we think OpenPrescribing is a useful tool in helping develop “QIPP Plans” and to identify new areas for savings related to medicines spend.

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Trial Reporting at NHS Trusts in England

Nearly all trials of medicinal products conducted in Europe since 2004 are required to post their results directly onto the EU trials register within one year of completion. Since September, our EU TrialsTracker has monitored all clinical trials in the EU to check whether they are compliant. Recently we produced a specific report on data on trial reporting at UK Universities: the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee is currently using this data to alert Universities and monitor their current reporting performance.

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Two new measures on OpenPrescribing — Herbal medicines and Freestyle Libre

We have recently released two new measures on OpenPrescribing — the prescribing costs of herbal medicines, and the quantity of Freestyle Libre. Herbal medicines For techie reasons, we’re quite excited about the herbal medicines measure. We don’t like to write measures that require a manually managed list of preparations, as these require a lot of curation, and can quickly become inaccurate if a new drug is released. Therefore for most (if not all) of our measures we use the hierarchical BNF codes provided by the NHS Business Services Authority (you can read more on these here).

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New Year Updates to the EU TrialsTracker

Our EU TrialsTracker has been live for 4 months providing data on who is and isn’t meeting EU trial reporting guidelines. The tracker reached a major milestone last week when our data was used by the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee to inform UK Universities of their current reporting performance and remind them of their ethical and legal obligations to report their sponsored trials. As some of our regular users may have spotted, we’ve recently make some changes to the EU TrialsTracker.

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Adventures in time travel with the Drug Tariff

While investigating the data behind Ghost Branded Generics, we came across something that we didn’t expect. As part of our work in creating the Drug Tariff viewer (once we’d managed to obtain the data), we’ve got an archive of Drug Tariff (DT) prices going back to 2010. We used our DT archive to compare listed reimbursement prices with what was actually being paid for generics, we sometimes found that the price paid wasn’t the one listed in the tariff.

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Ghost Branded Generics - Positive News!

Before Christmas we wrote about Ghost Branded Generics, a very nerdy story about a problem we uncovered that costs the NHS………£11.6million a year. Since then we have launched a freely accessible Ghost Branded Generics dashboard on Openprescribing.net for every practice and CCG in the country; and a Ghost Branded Generics measure so practices and CCGs can track their prescribing of Ghost Branded Generics over time. We have also had lots of people get in touch about this whole new category of NHS savings.

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Science and Technology Select Committee Chair Uses EU TrialsTracker Data in Letters to UK Universities

Yesterday, we shared an overview of trial reporting performance for all UK Universities on our EU TrialsTracker and FDAAA TrialsTracker. Today, we are pleased to see this data being put to good use. Following-up on the October 2018 report on clinical trials transparency, the chair of the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, Norman Lamb MP, has sent letters to 41 universities with trials registered on the EU Clinical Trials Register (EUCTR).

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Trial Reporting at UK Universities

Our EU TrialsTracker has now been live for four months. As of 10 January 2019, we have identified 8,062 trials registered in Europe that are unambiguously due to report results under EU guidelines; a total of 4,323 (53.6%) trials have reported results to the registry. We have also seen some institutions — for example Kings College London — improve their trial reporting performance dramatically and rapidly. Our BMJ paper showed that non-commercial sponsors (mostly universities) were substantially worse at reporting results to the registry, when compared with drug companies.

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Ghost Branded Generics: A new dashboard on OpenPrescribing

Before Christmas we wrote a nerdy story about Ghost Branded Generics, a problem that costs the NHS £11.6m a year due to prescribers selecting specific manufacturer’s products rather than true generics. This is largely avoidable. Today we launch our Ghost Branded Generics dashboard for every practice and CCG in the country. This can be accessed through every dashboard page (example below) and we think it will be useful to help people change prescriptions from Ghost Branded Generics to true generic prescriptions.

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