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Society welcomes increase in science funding in 2020 spending review

Published: 25 Nov 2020 in Society news

Today, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, announced £14.6 billion in funding for Research & Development to continue to establish the UK’s future as a global leader in science and technology.

Part of this sum will go to funding for clinical research to support delivery of new drugs, treatments, and vaccines. Pharmacology and clinical pharmacology play a key role in the development of new drugs, and the clinical trials required to test these drugs.

Another promising aspect of the spending review, is the funding announced to support Health Education England. A large proportion of the Society’s work involves supporting, developing, and facilitating training of pharmacologists and clinical pharmacologists. At a time where new treatments and clinical trials must be expedited safely and quickly, ensuring students and trainees have the appropriate foundational training is of the utmost importance.

Dr Anna Zecharia, Director of Policy and Public Affairs, said:

We welcome the news from the spending review, especially the increase in science funding. Earlier this year, we joined colleagues in the sector to make the case for overall UK investment in science to reach at least 2.4% of GDP by 2027. We are pleased that today’s announcement shows we are working towards this target.

“The spending review shows the government is committed to investment in science as part of the UK’s economic strategy. Further, in a year where UK research has made significant contributions to the safe and effective treatment, and prevention, of COVID-19, this funding will help ensure we are able to continue to invest in our excellent research base for the benefit of patient health.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on UK medical research charities and, considering their contribution to the UK research base, funding options to protect these organisations should be expedited.


To read more about how clinical pharmacology has played an important role in the COVID-19 pandemic. Please read our recent news story and visit our COVID-19 hub.

Earlier this year we welcomed the government’s £22 billion investment in UK science by 2024-25. Read our news story.

To read more about the impact on medical research charities, read the Association of Medical Research Charities work in the area.

To find out more about the policy work we are doing, please get in touch.