Individual funding requests

The NHS looks to provide care for all patients but there are some treatments that are not normally available on the NHS. An individual funding request (IFR) is a request for NHS funding for treatment that is not normally available and one which is only paid for under certain circumstances.

The NHS has limited resources and we have a duty to manage them carefully. This means we have to:

  • look at the clinical reasons for exceptionalism in individual cases
  • look at evidence for the safety and effectiveness of any treatment
  • ensure that the services we pay for will give patients the greatest health gains from the resources we have.

For these treatments, a policy has been outlined which is applied on a case-by-case basis.

How can I make an individual funding request?

The IFR process is clinically led. This means that a patient will need the support of a clinician (usually the patient’s GP or hospital consultant) to make a case on their behalf and only if the clinician considers there to be clinical grounds for the request. The IFR policy provides details of the full process. We will add our new NCL Individual Funding Requests Policy to this page as soon as it has been agreed.

What does the application process involve?

IFR applications are taken through a formal weekly triage and, where this is appropriate, referred on to a clinically led IFR panel, which is generally held monthly. The IFR panel takes a number of factors into consideration including clinical effectiveness, cost effectiveness, grounds for exceptionality and equality considerations for other similar patients.

We have a policy that sets out the principles behind our decisions on individual treatments. It also explains the system we have for processing each request for treatment. 

Contact details

If you want to know what our policy is on a particular drug or treatment you can contact:

Individual Funding Requests (IFR) Team
North and East London Commissioning Support Unit
Clifton House
75 – 77 Worship Street
London EC2A 2EJ

Telephone: 020 3688 1290