NHS Commercial Framework for Medicines

Closes 10 Jan 2020

Opened 1 Nov 2019


NHS England has a significant role to play in supporting patient access to clinically and cost-effective medicines by offering enhanced commercial arrangements where appropriate and practical.

The 2019 Voluntary Scheme for Branded Medicines Pricing and Access committed NHS England to publishing a commercial framework, setting out more operational detail on the commercial arrangements with industry.

The Commercial Framework:

  • outlines the purpose and principles on which NHS commercial medicines activity will be based.
  • defines the roles and responsibilities of those involved in commercial medicines activity and detailing how pharmaceutical companies can engage with the NHS.
  • clarifies the routes to routine commissioning in the NHS, and where commercial activity can occur in those routes.
  • outlines commercial flexibilities, and circumstances where they could be considered. 

This draft framework was developed by NHS England with the help and input of partners including the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), the Department of Health and Social Care and the Office for Life Sciences. It sets out our existing arrangements and provides further operational detail to complement the Voluntary Scheme.

NHS England would now like to hear your views on this framework to ensure it has been informed by a broad range of voices. If you wish to comment, please complete the online survey below.

As part of the Commercial Framework engagement, the Commercial Operations Team are hosting two engagement events:

  • Wednesday 18 December 2019, 1.30pm at the Manchester Conference Centre, M1 3BB
  • Friday 20 December 2019, 10.00am at De Vere West One, London, W1B 1PR

Please note spaces are limited and we can only accommodate a maximum of two representatives from any organisation. Expenses will not be reimbursed for attendance. Tea and coffee will be available.

To register your interest for the above events please register via the links below:



  • All interested stakeholders


  • Commissioning