Following the close of the Parliamentary session last week, the State Opening of Parliament took place with the Queen’s Speech outlining government’s intended legislative programme. Twenty-six Bills were announced with several of relevance to the sector, covering Brexit, immigration, NHS patient safety, and medicines and medical devices. The latter Bill includes measures to make it simpler for NHS hospitals to manufacture and trial new innovative medicines and diagnostic devices, to remove unnecessary bureaucracy for the lowest risk clinical trials, and to increase the range of professions able to prescribe low-risk medicines.

Non-legislative measures announced include action on the NHS Long-Term Plan and integration of care, adult social care, and mental health reform. Accompanied without further detail, the creation of a new science funding agency was also announced. Speculation suggests this could work on a DARPA-like model of challenge-led funding.

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