ABPI Cymru Wales weekly digest

12 July 2024

  • The latest briefing from the Welsh NHS Confederation highlights examples of how the health and care workforce are meeting the changing needs of the population across Wales.
  • The Senedd Research Service have published a new resource: Empowering Patients: A Resource for Senedd Members Supporting Constituents on NHS Waiting Lists, offering practical support.
  • Public Health Network Cymru - who aim to connect people, share knowledge and create change for a better Wales - have just launched a new presence on LinkedIn
  • The following All Wales Medicines Strategy Group (AWMSG) recommendation has been ratified by Welsh Government:
    • Cytisine is recommended as an option for use within NHS Wales for smoking cessation and reduction of nicotine cravings in smokers who are willing to stop smoking.
      AWTTC Ref (3708)

05 July 2024

28 June 2024

21 June 2024

  • ABPI Cymru Wales is helping to support the Welsh Parliament / Senedd Cymru Cross Party Group on Medical Research Showcase in Cardiff on 3rd of July 2024. Whilst all the spaces to exhibit have now been taken, you can register to attend the event by contacting Susan quoting "Cross Party Group - Medical Research Showcase - 3rd July 2024". 
  • The Welsh Government have published a response to the latest NHS Wales performance data for April and May 2024.
  • The Welsh NHS Confederation will have their annual conference on the 6th of November 2024 at the Cardiff City Stadium. If you are interested, there will be partnership, sponsorship and exhibition opportunities.
  • The Wales Cancer Industry Forum is holding its next meeting on the 8th of July, at the Wales Genomic Health Centre, Cardiff Edge (Longwood Drive, Cardiff, CF14 7YT) and virtually via Teams. The meeting will include key note presentations from Eluned Morgan MS, Cabinet Secretary for Health & Social Care, Welsh Government, and Professor Dame Anna Dominiczak, Chief Scientist, Scottish Government on the approach for tackling cancer through working with industry in Wales, and the experience of working with Industry in Scotland respectively.

14 June 2024

  • ABPI Cymru Wales is helping to support the Welsh Parliament / Senedd Cymru Cross Party Group on Medical Research Showcase in Cardiff on 3rd of July 2024. You can register to attend the event by contacting Susan quoting "Cross Party Group - Medical Research Showcase - 3rd July 2024".
  • AWTTC have recently published some new resources on specialist antimicrobial prescribing, which AWMSG endorsed in September 2022.
  • This week saw a debate on the Welsh Government's Six Goals for Urgent and Emergency Care.

07 June 2024

  • Digital Health and Care Wales have shared information on Diabetes View, a new collation of information available to those Health Boards using Diabetes Consultation Note.
  • ABPI Cymru Wales is helping to support the Welsh Parliament / Senedd Cymru Cross Party Group on Medical Research Showcase in Cardiff on 3rd of July 2024. Whilst all the spaces to exhibit have now been taken, you can register to attend the event by contacting Susan quoting "Cross Party Group - Medical Research Showcase - 3rd July 2024".

31 May 2024

  • The Health and Social Care (Wales) Bill was introduced into the Senedd recently. The Senedd Research Service has updated its resource pages to, pull together key publications to support scrutiny of the Bill. It will be updated as the Bill makes its way through the Senedd’s legislative process.
  • The Senedd Research Service has this week published an article on the gynaecological cancers debate.
  • Digital Health and Care Wales have announced that "Digital Medicines" is the new name for their programmes and projects that are transforming medicines and prescribing processes in Wales. The Digital Medicines Transformation Portfolio has now been included in the wider portfolio of national programmes managed by DHCW. The programmes and projects are:
    • Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) in primary care
    • electronic Prescribing and Medicines Administration (ePMA) in secondary care
    • Shared Medicines Record
    • Patient access to medicines information through the NHS Wales App
  • This week, the Welsh Government Economy Secretary, Jeremy Miles, announced £900,000 funding for 5 projects which promise to deliver real-life medical benefits through cutting edge life sciences technology.
  • ABPI Cymru Wales is helping to support the Welsh Parliament / Senedd Cymru Cross Party Group on Medical Research Showcase in Cardiff on 3rd of July 2024. If you want any further details about this event, please contact the office in the first instance.

24 May 2024

  • AWMSG recently acknowledged the Systemic Anti-cancer Therapy (SACT) resources - Guideline for prevention and management of tumour lysis syndrome. One of the primary goals for the Cancer Network is for its Systemic Anti-cancer Therapy (SACT) leads to produce a set of All Wales protocols and supporting guidelines, which can drive harmonisation of practice across Wales and facilitate a move to a single SACT ePrescribing system. This specific guideline is for healthcare professionals delivering SACT for adult patients with malignant disease and aims to standardise the management of tumour lysis syndrome. 
  • Welsh Government have recently ratified the following AWMSG decisions: o Opicapone (Ongentys®) is recommended as an option for use within NHS Wales as adjunctive therapy to preparations of levodopa/DOPA decarboxylase inhibitors (DDCI) in adult patients with Parkinson’s disease and end-of-dose motor fluctuations who cannot be stabilised on those combinations. AWTTC Ref 5285 o Alglucosidase alfa (Myozyme®) is recommended as an option for use within NHS Wales for long-term enzyme replacement therapy in patients with a confirmed diagnosis of Pompe disease (acid α-glucosidase deficiency). Myozyme® is indicated in adults and paediatric patients of all ages. AWTTC Ref 17
  • The Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care has agreed the appointment of Nick Elliot as interim Chair to Public Health Wales NHS Trust from 01 June 2024. Please note that a link to the decision report is unavailable.
  • This week, the Welsh Government published the latest NHS statistics for Wales, with the associated press release.
  • Following review by the One Wales Medicines Assessment Group (OWMAG), the One Wales Interim Decisions for the following medicines have been noted by AWMSG and ratified by Welsh Government.
    • Infliximab for the treatment of refractory pulmonary sarcoidosis that has not responded to corticosteroids and other immunosuppressants
    • Ustekinumab (Stelara®▼) for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease in children and young people aged 6 to 17 years: for ulcerative colitis following loss of response, non-response or intolerance to anti-TNF therapies and vedolizumab; for Crohn’s disease following loss of response, non-response or intolerance to anti-TNF therapies
    • Vedolizumab (Entyvio®) for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease in children and young people aged 6 to 17 years: for ulcerative colitis following loss of response or non-response to anti-TNF treatment; for Crohn’s disease following loss of response or non-response to anti-TNF treatment and ustekinumab

17 May 2024

  • Last week, the Welsh Government published 'The Directions to Local Health Boards and NHS Trusts in Wales 2003 and the Managed Introduction of New Medicines into the National Health Service in Wales Directions 2009 (Amendment) (Wales) Directions 2024' which can be found on the Welsh government website. The associated Welsh Health Circular is now available.
  • The AWTTC Newsletter was recently published, highlighting the work that has been undertaken over the last few months.
  • The Welsh NHS Confederation have published an infographic highlighting their impact in Wales.

10 May 2024

  • Last week, the Welsh Government published 'The Directions to Local Health Boards and NHS Trusts in Wales 2003 and the Managed Introduction of New Medicines into the National Health Service in Wales Directions 2009 (Amendment) (Wales) Directions 2024'.
  • The Welsh Government have published a written statement on the publication of the UK Antimicrobial Resistance National Action Plan 2024-29.
  • The Welsh Government has published new guidance on medicines shortages.
  • The One Wales Medicines Advisory Group (OWMAG) have recommended using dabrafenib and trametinib together to treat anaplastic thyroid cancer if it has a particular genetic variant called BRAF V600E. The All Wales Medicines Strategy Group endorsed the decision and Welsh Government ratified it in April 2024.
  • The Senedd Research Service has published an article, examining efforts to reduce the NHS waiting list backlog.

03 May 2024

  • This week, the Welsh Government published 'The Directions to Local Health Boards and NHS Trusts in Wales 2003 and the Managed Introduction of New Medicines into the National Health Service in Wales Directions 2009 (Amendment) (Wales) Directions 2024'. We await the publication of the associated Welsh Health Circular.
  • Following an ABPI Cymru Wales event at the Senedd last week, Russell George MS has published a Statement of Opinion. This welcomes the work of the ABPI in producing bilingual material for children on the importance of medicines, and commends the Your Medicines, Your Health campaign (Cwm Taf University Health Board).
  • This week, the Welsh NHS Confederation welcomed their new chair Jonathan Morgan, chair of member organisation Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board.
  • The following AWMSG recommendation has been ratified by Welsh Government:
    • Trifarotene (Aklief®▼) is recommended as an option for use within NHS Wales for the cutaneous treatment of Acne Vulgaris of the face and/or the trunk in patients from 12 years of age and older, when many comedones, papules and pustules are present. AWTTC Ref (3153)
  • The Senedd Cymru Health and Social Care Committee has published its Spring Update. It includes an invitation to participate in an Area of Research Interest (ARI) on health literacy. The Committee will use the information gathered through the ARI repository to scope and support its future work, in line with its strategy for the Sixth Senedd.
  • The Health and Social Care Committee at Senedd Cymru has published two reports following pre-appointment hearings for the Chair positions at Hywel Dda University Health Board and Swansea Bay University Health Board. In both cases, the Committee found that there was no reason why the Welsh Government’s preferred candidate should not be appointed to the post of Chair. The candidates are, Neil Wooding (Hywel Dda University Health Board), and Jan Williams (Swansea Bay University Health Board).
  • Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW) have published their latest Stakeholder Bulletin.
  • Public Health Wales is urging parents and carers to ensure that their children are fully vaccinated with two doses of the MMR vaccine to avoid catching measles as cases rise in an outbreak in Gwent.
  • Advanced Therapies Wales have opened registration to their Symposium 2024, to be held at the St Fagans National Museum of History, Cardiff on the 15th of May 2024. 

26 April 2024

  • The National Prescribing Indicators 2023–2024: Analysis of Prescribing Data to December 2023 document has been prepared by the Welsh Analytical Prescribing Support Unit.
  • Digital Health and Care Wales (DHCW) has announced that the pharmacy system supplier Invatech has been given the green light to roll out its technology across Wales. Completion of successful live testing at a site in North Wales makes Invatech the first of the community pharmacy system suppliers to be ready for wider use across Wales. The new Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) allows GP surgeries to send prescriptions electronically to the patient’s choice of community pharmacy, without the need for a paper form.
  • Advanced Therapies Wales have opened registration to their Symposium 2024, to be held at the St Fagans National Museum of History, Cardiff on the 15th of May 2024.

19 April 2024

  • The All Wales Medicines Strategy Group (AWMSG) have published their new five-year strategy. The AWMSG Strategy for Wales 2024-2029 aligns to the priorities of both NHS Wales and Welsh Government, and aims to play an important part in ensuring all people in Wales can receive health services that meet their needs. AWMSG will collaborate with key partner organisations across NHS Wales to work towards meeting
    their four ambitions:
  • improving outcomes for patients;
    • ensuring the right medicines are available at the right time;
    • minimising medicines-related harm and improving safety; and
    • optimising the value the NHS achieves from its investments in medicines.
  • The Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, Eluned Morgan, published a response to the NHS Wales performance data – February and March 2024, which was also published this week.
  • Please see below two Welsh Government statistical releases that came out this week:
    • NHS expenditure programme budgets: April 2022 to March 2023, 16 April 2024 - NHS expenditure by programme of care allocated based on the medical condition (ICD10) the expenditure relates to for April 2022 to March 2023.
    • Health Maps Wales: 2023, 16 April 2024 - An interactive tool which includes data on hospital admissions, cancer incidence, mortality and fertility rates.
  • Advanced Therapies Wales have opened registration to their Symposium 2024, to be held at the St Fagans National Museum of History, Cardiff on the 15th of May 2024.

22 March 2024

  • On Saturday, 16th of March, Welsh Labour announced their new leader, Vaughan Gething. He won the election by a small margin (51.7% / 48.3%) from his only contender, Jeremy Miles.
  • On Tuesday, 19th of March, Mark Drakeford stood down from his role as First Minister of Wales. Following a vote in the Welsh Parliament / Senedd Cymru, Vaughan Gething will replace him. We anticipate that an updated programme of government will be
    announced in July (before the Summer Recess), but is very likely to follow some of the promises made in his manifesto from the election campaign.
  • On Thursday, 21st of March, a new cabinet was announced. Eluned Morgan has remained with the health and social services remit and Jeremy Miles has been given economy, energy, and Welsh language.
  • Of note, the Welsh Government has reverted to using "Cabinet Secretary of...", with Minister reserved for more junior (deputy) roles.
  • Following an open public appointment process Welsh Government has announced the appointment of Neil Wooding as Chair of Hywel Dda University Health Board and Jan Williams as Chair of Swansea Bay University Health Board. These appointments are subject to pre-appointment hearings which are taking place on the 25 April 2024.
  • The Welsh Government has announced that using powers in accordance with Section 12(3) of the National Health Services (Wales) Act 2006, Hywel Dda University Health Board and Swansea Bay University Health Board are being directed to establish a Joint Committee to ensure the appropriate arrangements are in place to plan and deliver healthcare services on a regional basis, where appropriate to do so.
  • The Welsh Government has published a response to the latest health statistics published by Stats Wales. For the third month, overall waiting lists in Wales have fallen, although there has been an uptick in those patients waiting over a year.
  • Advanced Therapies Wales have opened registration to their Symposium 2024, to be held at the St Fagans National Museum of History, Cardiff on the 15th of May 2024.

Last modified: 18 July 2024

Last reviewed: 18 July 2024