The UK must harmonise with EU regulation on medical devices and address the country’s research funding short-fall post Brexit or risk losing billions of pounds worth of export opportunities and thousands of jobs, according to a new report by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.
The Medical Devices & CE Marking –the Impact of Brexit report calls on the UK Government to negotiate a compliancy agreement with the EU on Medical Technology (Med Tech), in order to ensure continuity with the EU CE marking process, which allows for the export of medical devices and equipment. The report also calls for greater clarity on how UK Research and Innovation will address the more than €1bn a year funding shortfall the UK faces once it is no longer eligible for European Research Council funding.
According to the report, ensuring the UK can continue to innovate and export is vital for the UK medical technology sector.
Dr Helen Meese, Head of Healthcare at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, said: “The UK Government must ensure that the Med Tech industry is high on its priority list as it prepares to negotiate the country’s departure from the EU. Not only does this industry make a huge contribution to domestic and international healthcare - from the design of artificial joints and organs through to the production of aids for independent living - the sector is also worth £17bn to the UK economy and supports 90,000 jobs.
“Leaving the EU without the UK medical technology industry suffering considerable long-term damage, particularly for small businesses, will be a huge challenge.
“As part of the UK’s Brexit deal, it is vital that the UK is able to maintain continuity with the EU CE certification processes, and enable UK manufacturers to export medical devices into the €100bn European Med Tech market. Our Government should not forget use the purchasing power of the NHS to help attract new business into the sector and retain influence over future European regulation. The Government also needs to outline exactly how UK Research and Innovation bodies such as InnovateUK and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council will address the more than €1bn a year funding short-fall from what the UK currently receives from the European Research Council.”
The Medical Devices & CE Marking –the Impact of Brexit, makes three key recommendations:
Download the full Medical Devices & CE Marketing - the Impact of Brexit report below.