Home Publications AMRC submission to the Department of Health consultation on legislation to encourage medical innovation

AMRC submission to the Department of Health consultation on legislation to encourage medical innovation

30 April 2014

We responded to a consultation on legislation to encourage medical innovation by clarifying clinical negligence law.

Key points:

  • We welcome the ambition of the Bill in seeking to address the important issue of encouraging medical innovation; innovation and its adoption can be low and slow in the NHS and there is much that can be done to improve this.
  • Through speaking to our members we are not aware that fear of litigation is a barrier to innovation, but recognise that professional standards bodies may be better placed to comment on this. 
  • Our vision for research in the NHS , prepared in conjunction with charities, professional bodies, clinicians, patient groups and others, identified the major barriers to research, innovation and its adoption.
  • We are concerned that some provisions in the Bill in current form could have unintended consequences and as a result may even be harmful, bypassing the important and necessary frameworks in place that ensure patient safety. 
  • We have set out some possible ways to improve innovation, including a possible greater operational role for Academic Health Science Networks, which oversee research and adoption but may potentially be able to review proposals for the use of innovative treatments. 
  • If the Bill were to proceed we would urge caution and encourage an active dialogue with the medical research community to try to address these important concerns about effective regulation to protect patient safety. We would be happy to carry on the conversation of how medical innovation can be achieved with the Department of Health and the other relevant bodies.
     
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