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Patient Access Schemes

A Patient Access Scheme (PAS) is a scheme proposed by a pharmaceutical company in order to improve the cost-effectiveness of a medicine and enable patients to receive access to cost-effective innovative medicines. The Patient Access Scheme Assessment Group (PASAG) reviews and advises NHS Scotland on the feasibility of proposed schemes for implementation.  It operates separately from SMC to maintain the integrity and independence of the assessment process. 

The process for the submission, assessment and implementation of PAS in Scotland can be found in the following guidance document and standard terms:

Pharmaceutical companies wishing to submit a PAS proposal to PASAG should complete one of the following PAS application packs (depending on the nature of the scheme):

The PAS application pack for a proposed scheme submitted in the context of a SMC submission should be submitted to the SMC Secretariat along with the New Product Assessment Form (NPAF) and associated documents. A PAS for a medicine undergoing a NICE MTA should be evaluated by PASAG concurrently with the NICE PAS Liaison Unit (PASLU) and the relevant PAS application pack submitted directly to the PASAG Secretariat.  More detailed information is available in the guidance document.

Pharmaceutical companies may contact the PASAG Secretariat ( in advance of submission for general advice and guidance on the operational feasibility of proposed scheme types. 

Guidance for manufacturers on comparator medicines accepted for use on the basis of a confidential Patient Access Scheme (PAS).

The SMC advice for medicines accepted with a PAS is accessed via the “Patient Access Scheme” filter within the SMC Advice Directory.

Details of NICE MTA that have been endorsed by HIS within Scotland can be viewed here.