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U.K. DES policy

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

The United Kingdom's National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) completed its final recommendations to the National Health Services of England and Wales on drug-eluting stents and sent advance "confidential" review copies of the policy to stakeholders, including professional societies and stent manufacturers, on Jan. 25, according to an institute spokesperson. The spokesperson would not reveal whether NICE has decided to stick with its August proposal to stop paying for drug-eluting stent procedures in the U.K. or maintain the status quo policy covering the devices in patients with certain disease characteristics. Stakeholders have five days to review the policy in confidence before the agency posts it to its Web site by Feb. 1. The draft released in August concluded drug-eluting stents are not cost-effective compared to bare-metal stents, but groups including the British Cardiovascular Intervention Society and British Cardiac Society have lobbied hard since then to convince the institute otherwise (1"The Gray Sheet" Sept. 3, 2007, p. 3)

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