A new report from the Medical Technology Group (MTG) has called on the government to lead a change in culture to ensure innovation provides widespread early access to medical technology for patients.
The MTG report, Our NHS: A Spotlight On the Innovation Landscape, calls for a top-down approach, with the group’s chair Barbara Harpham asserting that: “Creating a culture of innovation needs to come from the very top of Government and the buck stops with the Secretary of State himself.”
“His (Matt Hancock MP) commitment to technology is welcome, but he now needs to go beyond the exciting initiatives and embed a culture that really drives the adoption of new technology in the UK health system.”
The report recommends that NHS England form an Early Access to Medical Technology scheme, to hasten the uptake of medical technology, give patients quicker access to the technology and to provide support and funding for NHS organisations.
The MTG assert that the availability and access to funding for medical technology uptake must be dealt with: “The criteria for technologies achieving mandatory funding is initially very narrow, and focused on in year savings, the MTG would like to see this extended, with a funding mandate that is similar in operation to that of the system for pharmaceuticals.”
“The NHS needs to look at the vital elements of the system that impact the use of medical technology and ensure they are joined up. This would require a seamless process that supports all technology through the evaluation, commissioning, reimbursement and procurement challenges.”