Accelerated Access Review of Innovative Medicines and Medical Technologies

Close up of medical worker in lab



The UK Government launched the Accelerated Access Review to assess the pathways for the development, assessment, and adoption of innovative medicines and medical technology. The review will consider how to speed up access for NHS patients to cost-effective new diagnostics, medicines and devices. It will focus on innovative types of product, in particular, drugs based on stratified medicine, new diagnostics and digital health technologies.

As an early phase of this work, RAND Europe was asked to support the review through conducting a study to examine international examples of accelerating the use of drugs, devices and diagnostics. This explored systems across the world through which drugs, devices and diagnostics pass rapidly, identifying what works both in theory and in practice.


  1. To identify the key features of systems in which drugs, devices and diagnostics are assessed from trials to patients quickly by considering a number of global ‘front-runners’;
  2. To understand how these systems work in practice;
  3. To identify other theoretical opportunities which could be included the processes, which might be of relevance, and where possible consider lessons from outside the health system;
  4. To reflect on the challenges and opportunities to effectively translate into the UK’s health system, bearing in mind differing characteristics and economic/social/ideological backgrounds and identifying where legislative changes might be required.

Key Conclusions

  • Comparable empirical data are not strong enough to identify across-the- board international ‘front-runners’
  • The UK system performs well in some comparisons and most of the international examples of interventions have UK parallels
  • The approaches identified can be split into four conceptual groups each with different repercussions on the stakeholders in the health system
  • The terminology used to describe interventions to speed up adoption is inconsistent
  • Three underlying capabilities of the health system can support interventions to speed up adoption
  • A systems approach to speeding up the adoption of medical innovation will be necessary