NICE Consultation: Have your say on the social values that underpin NICE guidance

2007/063 Have your say on the social values that underpin NICE guidance

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) today (30 November 2007) launches a public consultation on the social values that underpin its guidance. The issues discussed in the draft report range from the often controversial: ‘should social background or lifestyle choices ever influence the decisions that NICE makes?’ to matters such as: ‘what sort of recommendations should NICE make when the evidence is weak?’. These are some of the social value judgements that NICE might need to consider when making decisions about the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of interventions.

NHS
National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)

Tel: 020 7067 5900
www.nice.org.uk  

Ref: 2007/063

PRESS RELEASE

Have your say on the social values that underpin NICE guidance

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) today (30 November 2007) launches a public consultation on the social values that underpin its guidance. The issues discussed in the draft report range from the often controversial: ‘should social background or lifestyle choices ever influence the decisions that NICE makes?’ to matters such as: ‘what sort of recommendations should NICE make when the evidence is weak?’. These are some of the social value judgements that NICE might need to consider when making decisions about the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of interventions.

The draft second edition of Social Value Judgements: Principles for the Development of NICE Guidance will give advice only to the independent advisory bodies producing NICE guidance and those designing guidance production processes. Importantly, it is not guidance for the NHS in general, nor other bodies with public health responsibilities. Decisions about individual patient care remains with the healthcare professionals working across the NHS, and the professionals responsible for the public health of individuals and communities. However, the document will be of interest to the wider public and the Institute’s many stakeholders as it will help them to understand the social values that underpin NICE guidance.

Professor Peter Littlejohns, Clinical and Public Health Director at NICE, said: “The second edition of Social Value Judgements will be used to help those developing NICE guidance to make difficult decisions in the most consistent way. The draft document sets out how specific ethical and social issues might need to be taken into account when NICE develops its clinical and public health guidance. It also describes the principles that NICE should follow in designing the processes it uses to develop guidance. The draft gives an interesting insight into what NICE takes account of when coming to its decisions, including considerations on how cost effectiveness analysis informs decision-making. We look forward to receiving comments via the website on the draft second edition of Social Value Judgements.”

The views of NICE’s Citizens Council have played a significant role in preparing the second edition of Social Value Judgements. The Citizens Council is made up of 30 ordinary members of the public, reflecting the demographics of people in England and Wales. The Council meets twice a year to discuss and debate challenging topics such as patient safety and health inequalities, and their views are published in reports which inform the broad social values that NICE should adopt. As well as these new Citizens Council reports, the draft second edition has been prepared using a range of other new information provided by technical experts, academics and the public.

The public consultation starts on 30 November 2007 and will run for 3 months. Comments are welcome via the website, www.nice.org.uk , and all comments received will be considered by the NICE board.

Ends

For more information call Dr Tonya Gillis on 020 7067 5937, or the NICE press office on 020 7067 5900 or 07775 583 813.

Notes to Editors

About NICE

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is the independent organisation responsible for providing national guidance on the promotion of good health and the prevention and treatment of ill health.

NICE produces guidance in three areas of health:

  • public health – guidance on the promotion of good health and the prevention of ill health for those working in the NHS, local authorities and the wider public and voluntary sector

  • health technologies – guidance on the use of new and existing medicines, treatments and procedures within the NHS
  • clinical practice – guidance on the appropriate treatment and care of people with specific diseases and conditions within the NHS.

About the guidance

The Social Value Judgments consultation report is available on the NICE website at: www.nice.org.uk/getinvolved (from 30 November 2007).
Information about the Citizens Council is available at www.nice.org.uk/citizenscouncil  

Laura E. Norburn

Patient & Public Involvement Programme (PPIP) Coordinator

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)
MidCity Place
71 High Holborn
LONDON, WC1V 6NA

Direct Line: 020 7400 0687
Direct Fax: 020 7067 5801
Main Switchboard: 020 7067 5800

Email Laura Norburn

Website: http://www.nice.org.uk  

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