With the 2015 General Election fast approaching, BIVDA co-hosted three discussion meetings at the Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat Party conferences.
As part of Life Science UK, and linking with the Association of Medical Research Charities, BIVDA welcomed a wide range of stakeholders to the meetings. Key issues were raised, including the adoption of vital technologies and innovations, and the value diagnostics can bring to the patient pathway. Across the three meetings it was recognised that effectively and appropriately harnessing the wealth of data the NHS could potentially provide was fundamental to the future of research, reducing variation and ultimately optimisation of treatment and care for patients.
In Manchester, Jamie Reed MP, Shadow Minister for Health, welcomed advancements in technology and heightened collaboration between healthcare partners and the NHS. A central tenet to his view was that while patients must be assured that their personal data is being used appropriately, maximising the NHS’s support for research will help the UK retain its position as a leading R&D market in Europe.
At the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, we welcomed the Rt. Hon Earl Howe, Parliamentary Under Secretary for Quality and George Freeman MP, the new Minister for Life Sciences to speak. Discussions focused on two great healthcare challenges of our time, Antimicrobial Resistance and Dementia.
At the meeting, BIVDA members Randox and Proteome Sciences spoke, and illustrated the importance of diagnostics to all aspects of the patient pathway, through their own case studies. Randox highlighted tests that tackled Antimicrobial Resistance and Proteome outlined their collaborative study, focusing on biomarkers and testing for dementia. Importantly, George Freeman MP, stressed the need to accelerate uptake of new tests and treatments in the NHS stating that adoption of innovation is a key priority.
Finally, at the Liberal Democrat conference in Glasgow, Norman Lamb MP, Minister for Care Services, came to hear about the future of personalised medicines. A range of speakers outlined the significance of diagnostics in stratifying or personalising medicine, to ensure that the right patients receive the right drugs at the right time.
We continue to engage with all relevant stakeholders, raising the profile of diagnostics. To hear about any future BIVDA events, or to put forward your case studies, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org