Therapeutic group summary
Making funding decisions
– the pharmaceutical funding team
Danae Staples-Moon, Therapeutic Group Manager
PHARMAC received more than 70 pharmaceutical funding applications in the past year. These are managed by a team at PHARMAC whose roles include looking after a portfolio of medicines and helping guide funding applications through the process.
Danae Staples-Moon is one of that team, a Therapeutic Group Manager (TGM). One of the portfolios Danae looks after is cancer, or oncology, medicines.
She says part of the job is horizon scanning and keeping in touch with new medicines coming down the pipeline. This can mean that, even before a funding application arrives, PHARMAC’s staff are talking with clinicians, consumer groups and pharmaceutical companies to gather information and intelligence about the product, and the condition it treats. The TGMs work with the companies (or clinician and consumer applicants) to advise on the information they’ll need to submit, to enable us to consider the factors relevant to best health outcomes including to inform clinical, and pharmacoeconomic analysis.
The clinical advice PHARMAC obtains usually comes from PTAC and its Subcommittees, which are made up of senior New Zealand health professionals with expertise in interpreting complex data in clinical trials. Economic analysis is provided by experts in PHARMAC’s health economics team.
Advice from PTAC and the economic analysis are used, along with other information, to compare potential pharmaceutical investments against one another and determine what ranking to give the new funding application, using PHARMAC’s Factors for Consideration.
If the application gets a high ranking and funding is available, the TGM then leads negotiations with the pharmaceutical company to reach a provisional agreement that would enable the medicine to be funded. After that, the TGM can determine an appropriate consultation process about the proposal, and makes sure that stakeholders’ views and feedback are presented to the PHARMAC Board (or its delegate) before a decision is made to proceed or not.
“It’s a very thorough process,” says Danae. “Our aim is to make sure that we get all the relevant information so we can make the best possible decision.”
“And we are always aware that the work we are doing impacts on people and can potentially make a real difference to their health.”
Last updated: 13 December 2018