Research Profile

Friday, 6 September 2013

Risk aversion is stifling biomedical innovation in the UK

Biomedical entrepreneurs succeed in this country, not because of, but in spite of the environment. We need a wholesale change in attitude from the organisations involved in taking a biomedical invention through to a treatment for patients. This includes not simply regulators, but also financiers, the NHS, government and universities.  

London for example, has the capacity to build a world class cluster for biomedical innovation second to none. But the recent report from John Hulsman highlighting the interim refusal of the vaccine Bexsero, provides a stark example of the risk averse culture in this country, a disease we will need to treat if we are to deliver on this potential.  

The Francis Crick Institute, due for completion in 2015, will provide one of the largest centres for biomedical research in the world. It will attract talent scientists and clinicians from around the world. They will expect and demand an environment that will facilitate the translation of discovery into treatments for patients.  

The UK has an outstanding pool of biomedical research, especially in London and the South East. It is time for us to work together to remove the remaining barriers to attract the investment and talent required in order that innovation can thrive in the UK for the health of our citizens and our economy.

A short version of this was published as a letter in CityAm

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