This major investment will help establish strong, sustainable relationships between industry and key regional NHS figures, to address a range of healthcare challenges and spur more rapid access and uptake of innovative medicines. In practice, this will mean working in partnership to improve patient outcomes; identifying and removing existing barriers to accessing innovative medicines; the development of regional partnership projects; and sharing best practice across the country.
The partnership team will comprise of five experienced industry professionals, one for each of the four Strategic Health Authority clusters in England, while the fifth member will provide strategic oversight for the group. Crucially, the new roles will operate to improve uptake and health outcomes in each region generally and will not promote individual companies or products.
This important work has been borne out of a realisation from both the NHS and the pharmaceutical industry that improving patient health, within a constrained financial environment, will best be achieved by working together. It builds on key recommendations of the Government’s Innovation, Health and Wealth report, published in December, which commits to dramatically improving the quality of care and services for patients through rapid adoption and diffusion of innovation including innovative medicines. Similarly, this work supports other important initiatives such as the ABPI’s ongoing strategic partnership with the NHS Confederation and Association of British Healthcare Industries (ABHI) to encourage adoption and diffusion of innovation within the NHS by showcasing best practice to key decision makers.
Commenting, Stephen Whitehead, Chief Executive of the ABPI, said:
“I am proud to launch the ABPI’s new partnership team and I know they will make an invaluable contribution to the work of the NHS and the pharmaceutical industry. This is a significant investment by the ABPI, but it is the right one because I firmly believe partnership working is the future of healthcare in the UK.
“I have already seen examples of the NHS and industry coming together to develop projects that have delivered much improved patient care and I am confident this new initiative will signal the beginning of many more projects to the benefit of all concerned.”
Commenting, Mike Farrar, Chief Executive of the NHS Confederation, said:
“We are pleased to support this new initiative and we look forward to working with our partners in the pharmaceutical industry to encourage the adoption and diffusion of new medicines that help improve the lives of patients. In our ongoing work with the ABPI and ABHI, I have witnessed first hand how working as a team can deliver significant patient benefits above and beyond what can be delivered by any party in isolation. That is why I am firmly behind greater partnership working and I will be encouraging my colleagues to engage with this important work.”
Commenting, Miles Ayling, Director Innovation and Service Improvement Dept of Health, said:
"I very much welcome the establishment on the ABPI's new partnership team, which will help build stronger the links between industry and the NHS as described in IHW. Beyond medicines, we are also looking at how all concerned can share skills, expertise and knowledge to improve the health of UK patients and help transform lives.”
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Notes to Editors
The ABPI represents innovative research-based biopharmaceutical companies, large, medium and small, leading an exciting new era of biosciences in the UK.
Our industry, a major contributor to the economy of the UK, brings life-saving and life-enhancing medicines to patients. Our members supply 90 per cent of all branded medicines used by the NHS, and are researching and developing over two-thirds of the current medicines pipeline, ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of helping patients prevent and overcome diseases.
The ABPI is recognised by government as the industry body negotiating on behalf of the branded pharmaceutical industry, for statutory consultation requirements including the pricing scheme for medicines in the UK.
NHS Confederation represent all organisations that commission and provide NHS services.
Our members include acute trusts, ambulance trusts, clinical commissioning groups, community health service providers, foundation trusts, mental health providers, primary care trusts and a growing number of independent and voluntary sector healthcare organisations that deliver services within the NHS.
We represent the NHS as a whole and also have a number of networks and forums to support our members in areas of specific concern to their part of the healthcare system.