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David Cameron announces support for UK life sciences

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Good news for Britain’s life science industry.

The Prime Minister today announced a series of measures to support the sector as part of its new “Life Sciences Strategy” – aimed at making the UK the best place in the world to invest in the discovery, development and commercialisation of medical innovations.

The UK life science industry is the third largest contributor to economic growth in the UK with more than 4,000 companies, employing around 160,000 people and with a total annual turnover of over £50bn.

The key measures announced today include:

  • Deploying remote medical devices – such as home-based equipment that can send details of the vital statistics of at-risk patients directly to doctors – to three million people over the next five years. 
  • Consulting on proposals on a new “early access scheme” which will put new drugs and technologies in NHS hospitals more quickly than ever before, particularly in areas where new treatments are urgently needed, such as brain and lung cancer.
  • Introducing a new £180m catalyst fund to help the next generation of brilliant British medical breakthroughs become the next generation of great British companies. This fund will target the funding gap that exists – the so called “valley of death” – between the moment that a bright new idea is developed in the laboratory and the point when a new drug or technology can be invested in by the market. 

“Yes, we’ve got a leading science base, we’ve got four of the world’s top ten universities, and we have a National Health Service unlike any other. But these strengths alone are not enough to keep pace with what’s happening,” says PM David Cameron. 

“We’ve got to change radically – the way we innovate, the way we collaborate, the way we open up the NHS. I want the great discoveries of the next decade happening in British labs, the new technologies born in British startups.”

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Daneel De Villiers
Alternative investments: stamps
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