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The Queen's Speech - What Is the Government Proposing for Pharma?

on Thursday, 14 November 2019.

Parliament has heard the Queen's Speech, showcasing the government's intended legislation for the up-coming Parliamentary period.

There were a few bits that caught the eye in relation to pharma, in particular, the Medicines and Medical Devices Bill. The objective of that Bill is to ensure the UK stays at the forefront of the life sciences industry in a post-Brexit world, including taking the lead in research to care rare diseases and improve treatments.

The Medicines and Medical Devices Bill aims to:

  • Extend the UK's global lead in personalised medicine and artificial intelligence. The MHRA would develop innovative regulation to enable early access to cutting edge technologies and break new ground in complex clinical trials.

  • Have powers to remove unnecessary bureaucracy for the lowest risk clinical trials, encouraging the rapid introduction of new medicines.

  • Implement a scheme to target counterfeit medicines entering supply chains and a registration scheme for online sellers.

  • Increase the range of professions able to prescribe low-risk medicines to make the most effective use of the NHS workforce as well as developing more innovative ways of dispensing medicines.

The Speech also announced a Health Service Safety Investigations Bill, which would establish the world’s first independent body to investigate patient safety concerns and share recommendations to prevent incidents occurring.


This is positive to see the government's commitment to maintaining and growing the UK's life sciences industry, especially in an uncertain pre-Brexit world - particularly in the fields of AI and personalised medicine, where the UK is already leading the world. It is open to doubt at this stage whether the Bills will see the light of day, given Parliament having broken up. However, if the Conservatives continue in power under Boris Johnson, this is a good indication of what is to come.

Through PING (Pharmaceutical Industry Network Group), VWV is holding a conference in 2020 on these areas where the UK is leading the way in life sciences - genomics, personalised medicine and AI.

If you are interested in being invited to attend the PING Conference, please contact Paul Gershlick in our Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences team on 01923 919 320, or complete the form below.


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