News

25.07.18

The government is going to ‘stockpile’ drugs in case of a no deal Brexit, Hancock says

The Department of Health and Social Care will stockpile on vital medicines to prevent a no-deal departure from the EU from creating supply shortages.

Matt Hancock told MPs and the Health Select Committee yesterday that the government is assessing the required amounts of different medicines should Brexit heavily impact importing prices of important drugs, but added he was “confident” the UK will not leave negotiations without a deal.

His comments come after new Brexit secretary Dominic Raab said the government will ensure “adequate” food supply to Brits if there is no deal by the time the UK leaves the EU on 29 March next year.

Hancock said: “There is work to do to ensure the NHS is ready for the possibility of a no-deal Brexit. We are seeking to avoid a no-deal Brexit, but departmental preparations are accelerating to ensure people’s health needs are provided in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

“The department is working up options with industry for stockpiling medicines, medical devices and substances of human origin in the case of a no-deal Brexit. Obviously, there will be a cost for this."

The new health secretary noted that some medicines with a short shelf-life will have to be “flown in” if transportation of other means are time consuming.

He continued: “This is exactly the type of contingency planning you would expect us to be doing. You can imagine that it is incredibly important for me, as Secretary of State, to ensure that people will have access to the medicines that they need.

“It is vital that we get the preparations right, but I am also confident that with the right amount of work, we can mitigate the worst of the circumstances.”

The chain of medical supplies, vaccines, medical devices, clinical consumables, and blood products were amongst the areas identified by Hancock to be stockpiled in case of a no deal.

Labour's shadow health minister Justin Madders said: "We need a Brexit deal which puts patients first, but now we know that the NHS is having to stockpile medicines because of this government's chaotic handling of Brexit.

"This is the terrifying reality of this government's failure to prioritise the NHS in the Brexit negotiations."

MPs have been calling for greater security of the UK’s medicines following Brexit for months: in May, a report released by the Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy Committee (BEIS) claimed that leaving the EU without a deal would leave Britain as a “second-tier state”.

Enjoying NHE? Subscribe here to receive our weekly news updates or click here to receive a copy of the magazine!

Image credit: zorazhuang, iStock images

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

latest news

View all News

comment

NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

23/09/2019NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

Reason to celebrate as NHS says watching rugby can be good for your mental ... more >
Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital exemplars who were revealed at the same show 12 months earlier.  Jeremy Hunt also stated that by the end of 2018 – the 70th birthday... read more >

last word

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad, president of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), sits down with National Health Executive as part of our Last Word Q&A series. Would you talk us throu more > more last word articles >

interviews

Mike Farrar, Swim England - Last Word

07/12/2019Mike Farrar, Swim England - Last Word

Mike Farrar Chairperson of Swim England Would you talk us through... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

Unappreciated Qualities of Leadership: Hope

17/02/2020Unappreciated Qualities of Leadership: Hope

Independent consultant and strategic advisor Dean Royles continues his series on The Unappreciated Qualities of Leadership. You can find links to his previous pieces here. ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

healthcare events

events calendar

back

February 2020

forward
mon tue wed thu fri sat sun
27 28 29 30 31 1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8

featured articles

View all News