NCL PoLCE policy update January 2019

Across North Central London (NCL) our aim is to have a consistent, evidence-based approach to delivering treatments across the area. NCL have now reviewed and updated the NCL PoLCE (Procedures of Limited Clinical Effectiveness) policy which has been in place since 2011 and last updated in 2015/16.

The review process to develop the updated PoLCE policy involved several stages during which a significant number of clinicians from across NCL were engaged in order to maximise the involvement of subject experts.  This process will continue to inform future PoLCE reviews and updates.

In Camden, the updated policy will take effect from 11th February 2019. Any referrals from this date onward are subject to the new policy requirements.

For the avoidance of doubt, if a patient has been booked and/or previously PoLCE approved prior to 11th February to receive a treatment that is defined as ineligible under the new policy, the patient will still be funded to receive the procedure.

A summary of the changes include:

  • Hyperhidrosis – iontophoresis is no longer funded

New areas:

  • Cholecystectomy
  • Divarication of recti repair
  • Non-femoral hernia repair
  • Penile implants
  • Chalazion
  • Autologous chondrocyte implant
  • Bunions/hallux valgus
  • Acupuncture and other complementary therapies​

At the core of this policy update is the ambition of NCL to deliver consistent, effective, evidence-based care to ensure the best outcomes, prevent procedures being undertaken where there is poor evidence of benefit to the patient, to reduce harm to patients by avoiding unsuitable treatments and to use NHS resources wisely. 

Expect a further update in April for criteria related to the London Choosing Wisely programme and the national Evidence-Based Interventions Programme work.

Download the updated NCL PoLCE (January 2019) here.