News, Policy & Media

Aug 06, 2020
Scientific researchers have advised that ramping up Test and Trace programme efforts will be key to schools reopening. They recognised the importance of getting pupils back to the classroom but stressed the work that needs to be done in terms of contact tracing before this is allowed to happen. Simon Clarke, minister for Regional Growth, told BBC Breakfast that the Test and Trace programme is ‘maturing all the time’, and that getting children back to school is a ‘top priority&r...
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Aug 06, 2020
The emergency call from Government for proposals to supply end-to-end serology / antibody testing products has ended. This announcement has been made to industry as Government says the country is past the first peak of the pandemic, and its antibody testing programme is now established. The science behind the clinical use case for serology is also developing.This means that Government will not progress new offers for serology testing. Accreditation of new serology testing products will now rever...
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Aug 04, 2020
As Britain negotiates trade deals with Japan, the United States and New Zealand, the International Trade Secretary Liz Truss has said that MPs could resist reject relevant laws and halt their progress. Truss maintains that Parliament is ‘entirely able’ to block the post-Brexit trade deals which are currently passing through negotiation stages. Through the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act process, MPs could end their support for a given free trade agreement. Ms Truss said Brit...
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Aug 04, 2020
A letter from Stephen Oldfield, Chief Commercial Officer at the Department for Health and Social Care has detailed plans to the Life Sciences industry on arrangements after the end of the Brexit Transition Period. Government has confirmed that at 11pm on the 31st December 2020, the UK will leave the EU Single Market and Customs Union and that there will be no extension to this period (read here). It is essential that the health sector is thoroughly prepared for this event. This includes the grad...
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Jul 30, 2020
A new Government testing push will double the amount of COVID-19 testing in the UK, aiming to reach 500,000 tests performed a day. Asymptomatic cases among health workers will be a focus of the expansion. More people without symptoms will be tested; the goal by September is to reach 150,000 people a day who do not know they have the virus, such as those working in health and social care and other jobs that involve contact with other people.This new campaign will launch on Thursday and aims to in...
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Jul 29, 2020
Public Health England has stated that it will not change its policy around rapid point-of-care antibody testing, despite warnings from the SAGE committee. The organisation has decided not to change its advice against rapid COVID-19 antibody tests despite evidence provided to Government that these are performing well. The report on COVID-19 antibody testing, published on 17 July 2020, was presented to the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) at its meeting on 2 July...
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Jul 28, 2020
The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a call for submissions of point-of-care coronavirus antibody tests. The Governmental department is seeking to produce and distribute more than 20 million testing units per month as part of its strategy to control the spread of coronavirus and generate transmission data from across the country. The HHS is tasked with protecting the civilian population by providing leadership in the use of effective medical countermeasures to treat ...
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Jul 21, 2020
The Government has released the 2020 Comprehensive Spending Review which sets out spending plans for the Parliament. The Review will be published in the autumn and will set out departments’ resource budgets for the years 2021/22 to 2023/24 and capital budgets for the years 2021/22 until 2024/25, and devolved administrations’ block grants for the same period. A fixed spending envelope has not been set by the Chancellor who acknowledged that spending will grow in real-time across the C...
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Jul 15, 2020
CRISPR biotechnology is expected to disrupt the testing market, in a move away from PCR-based testing approaches. Since February 2020, over 170 CRISPR-based diagnostic tests have been granted EUA from the FDA in the United States. This reflects the growing market within this field, a sector that could become a prominent player in the expanding testing market supply base. With countries across the world needing to invest in diagnostics during the COVID-19 crisis, a variety of technologies includi...
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Jul 13, 2020
The Government has announced a major new campaign around information for businesses ahead of the end of the Transition Period on 31 December 2020. The campaign will be titled: ‘The UK’s new start: let’s get going’ and will clearly set out any actions needed to be taken by companies ahead of this date. It will be publicised on a range of communication channels such as TV, out of home advertising, radio, print, digital and there will also be webinars held to inform the publ...
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