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UK Government Pricing Proposals Would Damage UK Biotech Ecosystem Warns BioIndustry Association


8/15/2013 9:44:14 AM

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15 August 2013 -- In its first public statement on the government proposals for a new statutory pricing scheme, the BioIndustry Association (BIA), the UK trade association for the innovative biotechnology sector, warned today that the government's proposed pricing regime for branded medicines in the UK will put at risk future investment in the UK biotech base.

Steve Bates, BIA Chief Executive Officer, said:

"The government's pricing consultation is an opportunity of vital significant importance to the UK life science sector, which will set the attractiveness of the UK as a location for ongoing medical research and development and ultimately patient access to new treatments."

"The perception of the UK as a market for innovative products has an important bearing not only on the global investment decisions of multinational biopharmaceutical companies but also upon private investment to support early stage bioscience companies. If there is uncertainty regarding the appetite in the National Health Service (NHS) to fairly support the uptake of innovation, private investors are unlikely to view investment into UK biosciences favourably.

"If the life sciences sector is to be an engine of growth for the UK economy then it is vital that companies are rewarded for their innovation in their home market. It is harder to sell innovative UK medicines around the globe if they are not purchased by the NHS.

"Medicines are already playing their part in delivering year-on-year efficiencies' to the NHS and UK taxpayer. Government data demonstrates that the branded medicines industry has contributed £3 billion to savings in the NHS since 2009 - ahead of the Nicholson challenge. The proportion of the NHS budget spent on medicines continues to fall.

"It is these new, innovative drugs that have made a significant difference in outcomes in cancer and heart disease and continue to deliver sustainable efficiencies' for the NHS."

The BIA's formal submission on the statutory pricing scheme consultation, at present being considered by the UK government, makes four key observations:

- A poor reimbursement framework undermines efforts in basic and translational research and development.

- The government's proposal is at odds with the positive actions and interventions taken forward under its Strategy for UK Life Sciences.

- The proposals risk the UK ceasing to be an attractive global launch market for new treatments.

- The life sciences sector is an ecosystem - where investment in research and development is linked to potential for reward for the resulting innovation.

For further information on the submission or to interview Steve, please contact Robert Winder, Head of Communications, rwinder@bioindustry.org, 020 7630 2191; mobile 07825 942 934.

Department of Health consultation

Consultation on "Revisions to statutory scheme for pricing branded NHS medicines" http://bia.me/16oDExB

BioIndustry Association

Founded over 20 years ago at the infancy of biotechnology, the BioIndustry Association (BIA) is the trade association for innovative enterprises involved in UK bioscience. Members include emerging and more established bioscience companies; pharmaceutical companies; academic, research and philanthropic organisations; and service providers to the bioscience sector. The BIA represents the interests of its members to a broad section of stakeholders, from government and regulators to patient groups and the media. Our goal is to secure the UK's position as a global hub and as the best location for innovative research and commercialisation, enabling our world-leading research base to deliver healthcare solutions that can truly make a difference to people's lives. For further information, please go to www.bioindustry.org

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