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Better access to breakthrough drugs


Cutting-edge medicines will be available for a limited time on the NHS under new Government plans.

As part of the Life Sciences Blueprint unveiled by health minister Lord Darzi and science minister Lord Grayson, the public will have better access to breakthrough medicines via the “innovation pass”.

The scheme will allow certain patients, such as those suffering from late-stage cancer, to bypass the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence’s (NICE’s) appraisal process for new drugs.

It is hoped the blueprint will enable patients to get faster access to pioneering medicines and technologies, while at the same time boosting business for life science companies.

Speaking at the blueprint launch at Imperial College London, Lord Grayson said he would turn around a recent trend which has seen the UK losing its market share in life sciences.

He said: “We need the life science industry to be a real growth story in this country.

“It is one of our leading industries so we have spent the last six months working with the industry across Government to identify what the problems are and what the solutions need to be to turn the situation around.”

Copyright Press Association 2009

Life Sciences Blueprint

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