Reducing expenditure on low clinical value treatments: A health briefing – Audit Commission [UK] – 14 April 2011

Posted on April 21, 2011. Filed under: Evidence Based Practice, Health Economics, Health Systems Improvement | Tags: |

Reducing expenditure on low clinical value treatments: A health briefing – Audit Commission – 14 April 2011

“This health briefing suggests that the NHS could save up to £500 million a year by carrying out fewer ineffective or inefficient treatments.

‘Reducing expenditure on low clinical value treatments’ argues that a single approach to defining these low value treatments could help to reduce the duplication of effort between primary care trusts (PCTs) and help to ensure consistency across the country.

The briefing considers some PCTs’ efforts to decommission treatments of low clinical value. The approaches they took and the list of treatments they targeted varied. The Commission is not advocating any particular list, but the types of low value treatments identified included:

Those considered to be relatively ineffective, eg a tonsillectomy.
Those where more cost-effective alternatives are available, eg not performing a hysterectomy in cases of heavy menstrual bleeding.
Those with a close benefit and risk balance in mild cases, eg wisdom teeth extraction.
Potentially cosmetic procedures, eg orthodontics.
Decommissioning treatments can free up money that could be better spent on other treatments, but decisions can be controversial. The briefing shows how strong leadership within PCTs, as well as good communication between PCTs, and GPs, patients and the public, are crucial success factors.

A simple and easy to use online tool has also been developed that allows the user to identify savings opportunities against the ‘Croydon list’.”

Using the Reducing PCT expenditure on treatments with low clinical value online tool

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