Permitted use of PGDs
There is nothing in legislation that prevents the use of PGDs in clinical trials, studies or pilots if the medicine has a UK product licence and all other legal and good practice requirements relating to PGDs are met.
Often medicines administered or supplied under a PGD as part of a clinical trial, study or pilot are not actually part of the investigation which is more commonly focused on the service design, delivery or patient group. Examples include use of a vaccine in a population outside the national immunisation schedule or the supply of a medicine as part of a clinical programme pilot (e.g. in the community pharmacy setting).
The UK licensing status of the medications involved must be considered.
If the medication use is off label this is permitted under a PGD, but this must be acknowledged within the PGD as stated within the NICE guidance and must be clearly justified by best clinical practice.
Unlicensed medications (those without a UK licence or Market Authorisation) cannot be supplied or administered under a PGD in any circumstance.
Organisations may wish to seek advice and support from their local Clinical Trials team or the commissioner of the proposed service.
Other useful resources include:
- Off label medicine use under a Patient Group Direction
- NICE Medicines practice guideline [MPG2]: Patient Group Directions
- Content reviewed - no changes or updates required.