The new UK Labour government’s impact on the Medtech sector will be multifaceted, involving changes across a number of key areas. This could present both opportunities and challenges for companies operating in this space depending on how they can adapt to the changes. In this blog, Director Tanya Ridding takes a look through some of the potential impacts we can foresee…

 


 

Healthcare policy: 

Labour is a strong supporter of the NHS and made several key pledges including increased funding and support for the NHS. This could lead to greater adoption of Medtech solutions to improve efficiency and patient outcomes. To make the NHS more efficient, we may see an emphasis on preventative care and early diagnostics, creating opportunities for innovators specializing in these areas.

Regulatory environment:

In October 2023, the Labour Party announced plans for a new Regulatory Innovation Office (RIO) to address Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) backlogs. The RIO will set and monitor goals for regulatory approval timelines and prioritize areas for regulatory action. Labour could also seek closer alignment with EU medical device regulations post-Brexit, potentially simplifying market access for companies that operate both in the UK and the EU.

Funding & support:

The government plans to invest £30 million in innovative medical technology to ease pressures on the NHS. This could also mean additional grants and subsidies for Medtech startups and research. There will likely be a shift to fostering collaborations between the public sector (NHS) and Medtech companies to drive innovation and improve healthcare delivery.

 

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Clinical trials:

The labour government have pledged to make the trial space more competitive, efficient, and accessible by standardizing processes and minimizing contracts and agreements. The overhaul of and investment in the NHS will also include investment into commercial clinical trial.

Trade & market access: 

Labour’s trade policies will influence the ease of exporting and importing medical devices. They may negotiate trade deals that favour Medtech innovation. With a focus on healthcare, policies aimed at reducing barriers to market entry for innovative technologies could also be beneficial to the sector.

Workforce & skills:

Investment in education and training programs to address skill shortages in the healthcare space and Medtech by extension, could lead to more innovation. Labour’s immigration policies will affect the ability to attract skilled professionals from abroad, positively impacting the talent pool available.

Digital health & data use: 

While details are still unknown, Labour may introduce enhanced data privacy and security regulations which will impact how both the NHS and the Medtech sector collect, store and use patient data. This impact will be seen particularly in digital and telemedicine innovations – which is likely going to be one of the areas the new government emphasizes innovation.

Sustainability:

Labour’s focus on environmental sustainability might lead to new regulations and incentives for Medtech companies to adopt greener practices in their manufacturing and operations.

 


 

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