The Government has published the long awaited MedTech Strategy which will support the delivery of safe, effective and innovative medical technologies in the health and social care system. Please find a link to the strategy in full here. A link to the Department of Health and Social Care’s press release can be found here, with quotes from Minister of State, Will Quince, National Director for Transformation, Dr Tim Ferris, Chief Executive of NICE, Dr Sam Roberts and Chief Executive of ABHI, Peter Ellingworth.
The Strategy builds on the aims set out in the Life Sciences Vision, outlining the implementation of priorities moving forwards. The Government commits to resolving long term challenges through collaborative working with the health system, patients, clinicians, academics and industry partners.
The MedTech Strategy vision focuses on three objectives: right product, right price, and right place. The Government will focus on ensuring products are clinically safe and effective for all patients, while reducing inequalities in access. The Government will promote the development of best-in-class regulations while upholding safety standards and encouraging innovative and sustainable product development.
The Government commits to cultivating an environment where the value of a medical device will be considered across the whole patient pathway, rather than in isolation. More emphasis will be placed on the long-term value of a device and its impact on patient outcomes. The Government will look to position the UK as an internationally and domestically attractive hub for MedTech products with an aim to increase access diversity, and resilience in the supply market to ensure technology is delivered to patients and medical professionals.
This strategy is an introduction to the future purpose of the Medical Technology Directorate in the Department for Health and Social Care. This strategy represents a reaction to the experience of COVID-19 in its emphasis on supply chain resilience and in boosting the UK’s manufacturing capability.
It also represents the Government’s attempt to better understand the medical technology landscape through a standardisation of data collection and the development of methods for quantifying and defining what is deemed to be “innovative” and consequently promoted for adoption. Through this market mapping exercise the Government has indicated that it is open to the adoption of innovation at scale in order to encourage industry investment and R&D.
The theme of net-zero and the future environmental sustainability of the MedTech sector also runs throughout this strategy. The Government directly challenges the sector to take greater effort towards ensuring that the ability to reuse and decontaminate devices is a central consideration in their production and manufacturing.
A key challenge to this strategy is likely to be the lack of detail as to how its key ambitions will be implemented. However, confidence should be taken from the Government’s signaled intent to develop “systems and processes” to better engage with industry and to engage more holistically in terms of the direction and strategy through clearer market demand signaling. Again, the success of this intention and how it is realised in practice, will be a key litmus test for the Medical Technology Directorate and its added value to the MedTech landscape more broadly.
A full summary and analysis of the MedTech Strategy from Healthcomms Consulting can be found at the below link: