Today marks the launch of the statement “Prioritising patient safety and public health across Europe post Brexit”, written in cooperation with the European Brain Council (EBC). The statement is currently supported by 14 pan-European organizations and was unanimously endorsed by EBC’s constituency on the occasion of the EBC General Assembly held on 23rd November.

Written against the backdrop of the UK’s departure from the EU, this statement provides a number of concrete policy recommendations to ensure patient safety and highlights the importance of prioritizing the interests of patients, quality of care and of medical research. Furthermore, decision-makers across Europe are being called upon to take the necessary steps to ensure that patients are put first in the Brexit negotiations.

Currently, the UK significantly contributes to regulating and approving medicines and medical technologies in the EU. Therefore, to ensure that EU and UK patients continue to have access to innovative drugs, the statement calls on politicians to fully align the UK to the EU regulatory framework for medicines and medical technologies and ensure that seamless trade between the EU and the UK is sustained.

The UK has the highest number of phase I clinical trials across the EU-28 as well as the second highest number of phase II and phase III clinical trials. Furthermore, over 1500 clinical trials are being conducted in the EU that have a UK-based sponsor, and over half of these are scheduled to continue beyond March 2019. Given that there is currently no disease modifying treatment for many brain disorders, decision-makers are being urged to seek a common framework for collaboration in research and information-sharing between the EU-27 and the UK to make sure that the EU remains a world class hub for research.

The statement was sent to the EU Health Ministries, the Permanent Representations to the EU and the Taskforce on Article 50 negotiations with the UK in order to raise awareness of its recommendations among a broad group of decision-makers.

The document can be accessed here.

Brexit- prioritising patients – FINAL-1-12-2017 (1)