The NHS is looking to reduce the number of interventions they do that don’t always work. Interventions refer to some surgeries or treatments that doctors prescribe, without any special approval. Up until now, the NHS has used these interventions to treat patients, but there is evidence to show that this is not always the best way of treating some conditions. This means that they can be ineffective.

The proposals aim to reduce avoidable harm to patients, save precious professional time, help clinicians maintain their professional practice in line with the changing evidence base, create headroom for innovation and maximise value and avoid waste for patients and taxpayers.

At both national and local levels, there is a general consensus that more needs to be done to ensure the least effective interventions are not routinely performed, or only performed in more clearly defined circumstances.

NHS England have formed a new national collaboration with the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, NICE, NHS Clinical Commissioners and NHS Improvement’ GIRFT programme to turn this consensus into action – the Evidence Based Interventions Programme. This programme is counterpart to the items that should not be routinely prescribed in primary care (https://bit.ly/2AIOkvN) programme launched in 2017.

NHS England are publicly consulting on the design principles of the programme, the interventions we should target initially and proposed clinical criteria, the activity goals NHS England should set and delivery actions, including proposed new terms in the NHS Standard Contract.

Consultation documents

Consultation: How to share feedback

The consultation will run from 4 July to 28 September 2018. If you would like to respond, you can do so by:

In addition NHS England will be holding a number of events to gather further clinical, professional and patient views.


NHS England will be holding two open events for patients to discuss the proposals and share feedback.  The first event will be held in Leeds on Wednesday 22 August (12.00 to 14.00) and the second in London on Thursday 23 August (10.00 to 12.00).  To register your interest, please email: england.EBinterventions@nhs.ne

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