MPs alleviate pharma fears of post-Brexit Britain

Oncology collaboration sees Eisai and Merck develop Lenvima
Credit: Syda Productions

A joint letter from Jeremy Hunt and Greg Clark, the Secretaries of State for Health and Business respectively, has outlined the UK Government’s plans for the regulation of medicines as the UK leaves the European Union.

​In response to the letter – published by the Financial Times – Mike Thompson, Chief Executive of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), said: “This letter is a welcome recognition that the future of medicines regulation is a key priority for the Government as we negotiate a new relationship with the EU.

“It also signals a readiness to take a pragmatic approach to Brexit negotiations that puts people’s health first. This is a great first step and we look forward to seeing more detail in the coming weeks and months.

“If patients in Europe are to continue to get safe and effective medicines in a timely fashion, the focus must be on agreeing regulatory partnership between the UK and the EU.

“The timeframes we need to meet to ensure no disruption or delay mean that confirmation of a reciprocal approach from the EU would provide welcome certainty to more than 500 million patients.”

​​The ABPI is working to establish consensus on key Brexit issues such as a regulation, trade, immigration and UK science.

This has been to ensure that patients and public health are central to Brexit negotiations, and that UK Life Sciences is in as strong a position as possible as the UK establishes a new relationship with Europe.

This work is ongoing, and continues to involve more than 200 global experts from pharmaceutical and biotech companies; academic groups and research charities; the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency; the NHS and Public Health England; and a vast range of UK Government departments.