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NICE strategy 2021 to 2026: dynamic, collaborative, excellent

May 2021
Our chief executive, Gillian Leng.
Dear <<First name>>,

In mid-April, we launched NICE’s new strategy for the next 5 years. It was fantastic to see over 3,000 people join the virtual launch. For those who missed it, here is an overview of our plans and what they will mean for our different audiences.

A shifting landscape

Over the past 22 years, NICE has built an international reputation for providing a robust assessment of new technologies, and for producing recommendations based on the best available evidence for front line practitioners. But the world around us is changing. New treatments and technologies are emerging at a rapid pace, with real-world data driving a revolution in evidence. Busy health and care professionals need information to be accessible, easy to use and up to date, to support their decision making. As the needs of the health and care system that NICE supports changes, so too must we evolve. 

Since March last year, we have all had to refocus our efforts on COVID-19. NICE has supported the health and care system through the pandemic with a suite of rapid guidelines on COVID-19 and by working with system partners to identify and speed up access to promising medicines. This work has hastened our desire for change. It has allowed us to show that we can be flexible and fleet of foot, without losing the rigour of our work.
Our strategy sets out an ambitious vision for our future, and a route map to its achievement.

Fit for the future: a strategic plan for NICE

Our ambitious 5 year strategy marks a new era at NICE. We remain absolutely committed to our core purpose of improving health and wellbeing by putting science and evidence at the heart of decision making but, through this plan, we will aim to become more dynamic, flexible and responsive. Our strategy outlines how we will develop our products, processes, and partnerships in the coming years. It sets out how we will cultivate our approach to be more responsive, using a range of sources of data and evidence, while retaining our independent, robust methods. 

We have reflected our vision for the future in 4 strategic pillars that underpin where we will focus our transformation work for the next 5 years. 

The ambition of pillar 1 is to provide rapid, robust and responsive technology evaluation. We are streamlining how we evaluate new technologies to get healthcare innovations where they’re needed, faster. We will be at the forefront of rapidly evaluating new and existing technologies to provide independent, world-leading assessments of value for the system and improved access for patients. Deliverables will include the launch of a new office for digital health and a life sciences hub on our website. This will be a dedicated resource for life science industries and others interested in our work, bringing together all relevant information about products being considered and those we’ve assessed.

The second pillar is to create dynamic, living guideline recommendations. We plan to make our guidelines easier to access and use, creating rapidly updated ‘living’ guideline recommendations so that health and care professionals can make informed, shared decisions with patients, based on the latest evidence. We will begin by adopting a new digital platform to produce guidelines in a new interactive format.

We also want to maximise our impact by driving the implementation of our guidance. Pillar 3 focusses on effective guidance uptake to maximise our impact. It outlines our ambition to strengthen existing strategic partnerships and forge new ones to ensure our recommendations are used, deliver improvements and contribute to reducing inequalities, with measures to track adoption. As part of this work, we will seek to embed our recommendations in decision support systems and partners’ regulatory, monitoring and improvement frameworks. 

Our fourth and final pillar is to show leadership in data, research and science. We will use our insight and expertise to drive the research agenda. We will develop innovative and data-driven methods, using real-world data to resolve issues of uncertainty and improve access to new, cost-effective innovations for patients. We will be establishing a new approach to deliberative public engagement, ensuring that our methods for dealing with complex and controversial issues reflect the values of informed members of the public. I will tell you more about this in my next update.

Next steps

Our strategy includes a delivery road map for the next 5 years and our early ambitions are detailed in our business plan for 2021/22. We will of course continue to monitor the external context in which we operate and, in the light of any significant changes, will refresh our strategy to ensure it remains relevant and that we are focussing our resources on the right priorities.

We look forward to working with you and all our external partners to deliver this strategy, and to keeping you informed of progress in future updates. 
Learn more about the NICE strategy
Gillian Leng CBE
Chief executive, NICE
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