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Ration Watch

The core mission of the MTG is to ensure patients can access the lifesaving medical devices they need. The MTG believes patient access should governed by what you need, not where you are. However, inequitable access is becoming more and more of a challenge as NHS budgets are constrained.

To demonstrate the extent of the problem, the MTG has established Ration Watch, an online resource which will showcase evidence of rationing of NHS treatments across England. Ration Watch is highlighting the impact of rationing and the damage it does to patients and the NHS. Through raising awareness of this issue, we hope to drive NHS leaders to do more to ensure patients do not face a postcode lottery in accessing lifesaving and enhancing medical technology.

Ration Watch 2024: Levelling Up or Levelling Down: The Impact of Integrated Care Systems on the Delivery of Care

Our latest Ration Watch report has looked at how the newly created Integrated Care Systems (ICS) have impacted regional variation in NHS performance. It has found that areas of high and low performance remain consistent over a two year period, with some of the country’s highest and lowest performing hospitals now found in the same ICS. The report calls for NHS England and the Department of Health and Social Care to implement measures to ensure that the medical technology, innovations and leadership methods that have contributed to the achievements of these highest performing regions are implemented both across the health service and within the ICSs to help end this variation.

Read the full report and media release.

Ration Watch 2022: Defeating the backlog

With more than 5 million people on elective procedure waiting lists in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, the key challenge for NHS England is how it ensures patients have access to the correct treatment as quickly as possible.

Looking at patient referral data from NHS England between July 2021 and March 2022 for all completed pathways, as well as specialised treatment areas including general surgery, cardiology and orthopaedics, the MTG reveals the best performing regions in England and shares some examples of best practice.

Read our report

Ration Watch 2019

The MTG’s investigation, conducted in October 2018, revealed that CCGs across the country were rationing access to proven treatments by including them on lists of restricted treatments or by applying high thresholds. Often these treatments can make a significant difference to patients’ quality of life and deliver savings to the NHS in the long run.

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