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Society response to the Life Sciences Industrial Strategy

Published: 31 Aug 2017 in Society news

The British Pharmacological Society today welcomed the launch of Professor Sir John Bell’s Life Sciences Industrial Strategy.

Society President, Professor David Webb said:

“I am pleased to see Sir John’s document setting clear goals to build the UK’s capacity in clinical trials and to streamline regulation – key elements in successfully creating a new medicine. It is also heartening that the Strategy recognises the UK’s strengths in clinical pharmacology, and the critical need to bolster our capacity in these skills. Sir John recommends that the sector ‘develop and deliver a reinforced skills action plan across the NHS, commercial and academic sectors based on a gap analysis of key skills for science’. We anticipate clinical pharmacology will be one of those key skills.”

There are challenges ahead. To meet the needs outlined in this report, and to build the UK’s capability to translate excellent science into patient benefit, we must work together to address supply and training needs for clinical pharmacology across the life sciences sector. The Society has a history of leadership in clinical pharmacology and, together with our partners at the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry, the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine and Health Education England, we are currently exploring what we need to do to secure its future.”

BPS President-Elect, Professor Steve Hill, said:

“Pharmacology is a key source of knowledge, skills and data in support of drug discovery and the development of new therapeutics. It can contribute greatly to the life sciences landscape, so we are pleased to see much of our input reflected in this new vision.

“As the report sets out, the UK must capitalise on its excellent science base through the creation of a positive environment for investment. Retaining access to skills, talent and infrastructure will be a critical challenge for policy makers, and the scientific community as a whole, as the UK prepares to leave the EU. The Society’s members work across the spectrum of pharmacology and across academia, industry, regulatory agencies and the health services; we are well-placed to support the strategy and look forward to the opportunity to do so.