Fri 6th Oct 2017
Life Sciences Industrial Strategy – report by Sir John Bell
On 30 August 2017, in a report commissioned by the UK government, Sir John Bell set out an ambitious vision for the UK health and life science sector, with the aim of making the UK a world-leader in this sector over the next 20 years.
The report contains a draft of recommendations. These include improving existing aspects, such as enhancing UK clinical trial capabilities and strengthening collaboration between the NHS and industry, as well as the creation of entirely new industries via the establishment of a Health Advanced Research Programme.
The importance of R&D is recognised, with a recommendation to increase the current R&D spend of 1.6% GDP to 2.6% over the next 5 years, in order to put the UK into the top quartile of OECD countries.
The report highlights a gap in the earliest stages in the pipeline of translational research in the UK (resulting in, for example, around 10 times fewer patents per quality academic publication compared to Germany and the US). The report suggests the formation of a translational fund to encourage the pre-commercial creation of clinically-useful candidates for drugs and medical devices to plug the gap.
Other proposals include a more favourable tax environment for the sector, as well as encouraging investment in technology clusters, manufacturing facilities and data hubs
In a nod to the post-Brexit landscape, the report recommends developing a migration system to facilitate the recruitment and retention of the most highly skilled workers from the EU and beyond, and developing a framework for close cooperation with sector-relevant EU regulatory bodies such as the European Medicines Agency.
This briefing is for general information purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice relating to your particular circumstances. We can discuss specific issues and facts on an individual basis. Please note that the law may have changed since the day this was first published in October 2017.