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Government promises a safe Brexit for medtech

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Is medtech getting enough support in Brexit negotiations?

The government has moved to reassure the medtech sector that its interests will be represented in Brexit negotiations relating to regulation and trade of medical devices.

Speaking at the Association of British Healthcare Industries (ABHI) 2017 conference, the parliamentary under-secretary of state Lord O’Shaughnessy promised a central role for the sector in the government’s life science policies.

Lord O’Shaughnessy said that patient safety would be given top priority in negotiations about devices regulation. He also pointed out that the UK is a very strong position because a lot of Europe’s notified bodies are UK-based.

He outlined plans in case of a no-deal scenario, promising that the government was prepared for this and would be able to establish a UK regulatory system.

Lord O’Shaughnessy declared that the intention was to achieve a settlement where there were no tariffs on trade in medicines and medical devices and a minimum of market barriers for medical research services. He also promised that the UK would be pursuing more global initiatives such as the medical devices single audit programme.

He also thanked MedTech Europe, ABHI and the European Coordination Committee of the Radiological, Electromedical and Healthcare IT Industry (COCIR) for their letter to Brexit Secretary David Davis and the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, and asked for more views about what a good settlement would look like.

Further information

Gov.UK: Lord O’Shaughnessy on medical technologies and Brexit

ABHI: ABHI annual UK market conference 2017

ABHI: Letter to David Davis and Michel Barnier