Could Health and Wellbeing apps become available on prescription in the future?

Digital health apps could be made available on prescription in future suggests the head of the government’s MedTech Directorate, David Lawson.

Speaking at the inaugural meeting of a new Health & Wellbeing Apps Alliance (Wednesday 25th January 2023), formed as a channel for dialogue between policy-makers and app promoters, Mr Lawson said:

“The MedTech Strategy includes a commitment to review the Part IX Tariff.  This provides an opportunity to explore the option to enable digital apps to be prescribed.  We are still at an early stage in developing our approach and would welcome engagement to inform our thinking.”

Chris Whitehouse of health policy agency, Whitehouse Communications, and columnist with MedTech Innovation News, explained:

“Part IX of the Drug Tariff deals with medical devices and sets out which are available on prescription and at what cost to the NHS. It’s really interesting that the MedTech Directorate is now considering whether including health and wellbeing apps in this section could be a good way of tidying up the current fragmented regulation.”

Welcoming the launch of the new Health & Wellbeing Apps Alliance, MedTech Director, Lawson added:

“The next 12 months represent a critical period with the update to the Medical Devices Regulations and the implementation of the inaugural MedTech Strategy. I very much welcome the proposed new network to provide a voice for digital apps to inform our approach going forward”.

Dr Adam Carey of the health improvement team at Coreperformance, who chaired the launch meeting, welcomed the review saying:

“Such a regulatory change could lead to much wider access to a range of health and wellbeing apps in future, closer to the German model. The launch of the new Alliance couldn’t be better timed.”

Apps interested in joining the new Health and Wellbeing App Alliance should email


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