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Reaction to Office for Life Sciences Vision

Mark Samuels, Chief Executive of the British Generic Manufacturers Association (BGMA), commenting on the Office for Life Sciences Vision, said: “A key theme from the Government’s vision for life sciences is that is it addresses and supports the diversity of the sector yet it entirely ignores our industry which ultimately supplies four out of five NHS medicines.

“I find it astonishing that we are both relied upon as a critical element of medicines supply yet side-lined and taken for granted when it comes to these forward-looking funding initiatives. Of course it is critical to invest across the life sciences sector - particularly in light of what has been achieved via the Covid-19 vaccines - but the pandemic has also taught us that innovation is not just to be found in new and untried areas. The first medicine approved to effectively treat patients suffering with Covid-19 was a repurposed generic in Dexamethasone. We believe there are scores of existing generic medicines which - with just a fraction of the funding talked about in the OLS Vision - could be used to treat unmet patient need.

“We also have grave concerns that the Vision also places more work and onus on the MHRA at a time when it is also facing significant budget cuts which will ultimately impact patient access to medicines.”