Published: 16 January 2019

Commenting on the outcome of the meaningful vote on the Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration, Aisling Burnand, Chief Executive of the Association of Medical Research Charities, said:

With Parliament having rejected the Prime Minister’s deal the UK is moving ever closer to exiting the EU without a deal. On behalf of medical research charities and the patients they represent, I must reiterate the sector’s grave concerns about the damaging impact of a no-deal Brexit on patients and medical research. 

A no-deal Brexit scenario is unacceptable. It would risk patient safety and jeopardise pioneering medical research in the UK.

In a no-deal Brexit, patient access to existing and new medicines as well as opportunities to take part in innovative clinical trials would be at risk. From day one of a no-deal Brexit, delays at borders would impact supply of medicines with the need to enact robust, but inherently risky, contingency plans.

The impact on the UK’s world-leading medical research base would also be profound. Collectively, members of the Association of Medical Research Charities fund almost half of all publicly funded medical research nationally as well as over 17,000 researchers. A no-deal Brexit could irreversibly damage our relationship with our most important research partner.

The damaging implications of a no-deal Brexit on patients and medical research must be clear and understood. With time running out we hope a solution can be found to the current stalemate which ensures no damaging impact on patients.”