UK Parliamentary Committee Meeting On Device Regulation, Weds 23rd May

A great opportunity to drive medical technology rather than crush it?

The UK Commons select committee on science and technology is meeting tomorrow (Wednesday 23rd May) to explore how to ensure the safety of medical implants before they enter the market, and how best to collect clinical data once an implant is in use, from the perspective of clinicians, patients and scientists.

More information can be found here.

Esteemed speakers include evidence-based medicine advocate Dr Carl Heneghan and Cardiothoracic Professor Stephen Westaby among others. The fact that one’s from Cambridge and one’s from Oxford should spice up that discussion regardless of content.

It’s in committee room 8, Palace of Westminster, if you’re interested.

The various medical device debacles of the last year have provoked furious and partisan debate about what constitutes a sensible approach to medical device regulation, so let’s hope that this particular committee finds the right spot on the spectrum from zero regulation to draconian regulation, because the public-opinion driven temptation to come over all “sharia” about regulatory controls must be pretty string at the present time.

Reassuringly the mood music seems to revolve around the best way to collect data from the market, which is no mean feat, but a mission worth chasing, as evidenced by the UK’s leadership position on all metal hips which was based largely on patient registries which somehow trumped FDA’s data collection on the subject and indeed poked the sleeping lion into life on the subject.

Our only question on the toughness of device regulation is whether patients are best served by being restricted from having new technologies used on them or by having access to them with appropriate post-market controls. We’re hoping pragmatism will out because there’s no doubt in our experience that for a country to truly lead the world in medical technology it needs to allow that technology to be used.

Source: medlatest staff