Special Authority applications for adalimumab, etanercept, secukinumab, tocilizumab and infliximab in 2020 and 2021

OIA response

11 November 2021 

Dear [name and contact details withheld] 

Request for information 

Thank you for your request dated 14 September 2021 under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) for information relating to adalimumab, etanercept, secukinumab, tocilizumab and infliximab. You requested: 

Nationwide Special Authority initiations and renewals by indication for adalimumab, etanercept, secukinumab, tocilizumab and infliximab by; 

  • Quarter for the full year of 2020 and year to date of 2021
  • Year total the full year of 2020 and year to date of 2021
  • By DHB for the full year for 2020 & year to date of 2021 

We wrote to you on 12 October 2021 to advise that we would provide you with the data requested as soon as possible and without undue delay. We have now finalised data for your request. Please find data for your request attached with this letter.

Please note, we approach our assessment of requests for information under the OIA on the basis that once we release the information to you it becomes available to any other party in that exact form (whether by you distributing it to others or by virtue of us receiving the same request from a different third party). 

We have provided a monthly data set, instead of quarterly as requested, as we consider it is necessary to protect the privacy of natural persons (section 9(2)(a) of the OIA). This is because we noted that your previous request of 21 June 2021 was for monthly data and providing quarterly data would result in previously anonymised (numbers shown as “≤10”) application approval numbers becoming identifiable. 

In providing you with monthly approval data, we have re-exported the data for the period provided in our previous OIA response of 19 July 2021. We have also removed the published response from our website. This is because we identified minor errors in the data previously released. 

Additionally, where 10 or fewer applications were approved, we have changed the number shown to "≤10" as we believe this is necessary to protect the privacy of these people (section 9(2)(a) of the OIA). 

As required under the OIA, we also considered whether, in the circumstances, the withholding of this information was outweighed by other considerations which render it desirable, in the public interest, to make this information available. In this case we did not consider that the public interest outweighed the reasons for withholding the information. 

Please note you have the right, by way of complaint under section 28(3) of the OIA to an Ombudsman, to seek an investigation and review of our decision. 

We trust that this information answers your queries. We are making our information more freely available, so we now publish selected OIA responses (excluding personal details) on our website. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions about this. 

Yours sincerely

Rachel Read
Manager, Policy and Government Services