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Government to set up express freight service for medicines in case of no-deal Brexit

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) plans to spend £3 million on emergency transport solutions for medicines in the case of a no-deal Brexit.

The Government has said it wants to hire an “express freight service” to transport medicines, blood and transplant tissue in the case of a no-deal Brexit.

“DHSC intends to run a procurement exercise to secure access to express parcel services between continental Europe and the United Kingdom (import and export), for the movement of parcel consignments of health care products,” the Government said.

Read the July/August edition of Pharmafocus online now!

The latest monthly edition of Pharmafocus, the July/August issue, is available to read for free online now!

The UK remains split right down the middle as the Brexit crisis rolls on and on, and while we have been side-tracked from one political wedge to focus on another – the race to become the new leader of the Conservative Party, and, ultimately, the next Prime Minister – there is still one issue that never fails to heal the divide: the defence of the NHS.

Top Ten most popular articles on this week

This week was diverse as always in terms of news coming out of the pharma industry, but the biggest news was undoubtedly the announcement of a $63 billion mega-merger between AbbVie and Allergan.

However, the story most popular with our readers this week is the news that Takeda intends to vacate all 1,000 of its staff from its US HQ by the end of the year.


The Brexit ‘cliff edge’: How life sciences can survive

Published on 24/06/19 at 12:01pm

Characterised by a persistent lack of clarity and a political climate that has everyone guessing from week to week, Brexit appears as an impossible challenge for industry. Partners Charlotte Tillett and Gustaf Duhs and Senior Associate Paula Harris of law firm Stevens & Bolton review the trying situation and spell out the best tactics for pharma to survive what could be a messy exit, whenever it may happen.

Top Ten most popular articles on this week

It's Friday, and time for another run-down of the week's most popular articles.

No-deal Brexit could cause shortages and higher prices, healthcare distributors warn

The Healthcare Distribution Association (HDA) has warned MPs that Britain could face shortages of medicines if it were to leave the European Union (EU) without a deal on 31 October.

Supplies of short-life and less common medicines would be put at risk in a no-deal Brexit, according to representatives of the HDA speaking to parliament’s Brexit select committee on 19 June.

Healthcare would be 'on the table' in post-Brexit trade negotiations with US, Trump's ambassador says

Woody Johnson

The American Ambassador to the United Kingdom has said that Britain’s healthcare system would be ‘on the table’ in post-Brexit trade deal negotiations between Britain and the United States.

Speaking in an interview with Andrew Marr, Johnson & Johnson heir Woody Johnson, the US Ambassador to the UK, said the “entire economy” would be “on the table” in trade negotiations between Britain and the United States.  

NHS Confederation chief says news of Brexit extension is a relief

Niall Dickson, the Chief Executive of the NHS Confederation, has said news of the decision to extend the Brexit deadline to the 31st October had come as a ‘relief’.

However, Dickson, who co-chairs the Brexit Health Alliance, called for an end to the ‘circus of uncertainty’ surrounding the UK’s exit from the European Union.

Epilepsy Society calls for review of UK supply chain following "steep rise" in access issues

The Epilepsy Society has drawn attention to the “steep rise” in UK patients who are encountering difficulty in accessing seizure medication.

While issues around access to these medicines have been or could be further exacerbated by Brexit, the society asserts that this has been a problem for over a decade, and one which Big Pharma has continuously failed to address.

The society has said that its “Helpline and enquiries desk inundated with worried callers”, and the added anxiety and stress is compounding the risk of seizures in patients.

Top Ten most popular articles on this week!

As Brexit looms, pharma trade lobby the ABPI called for a ban on exports of medicines in the case of no-deal Brexit. The industry organisation warned that a plummeting pound could incentivise distributors to sell drugs in markets abroad.

Meanwhile, this month’s feature ‘How I learned to stop worrying and love the placebo effect’ looked at what placebos mean for clinical trials. In talking to Harvard professor Dr Ted Kaptchuk, Louis Goss asked what the placebo effect is and what it means.

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