News story

DHSC publishes Brexit guidance for pharmaceutical industry and suppliers of medical devices

The Health and Social Care Secretary has written 2 letters to industry about contingency plans in the unlikely event of a no-deal Brexit.

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In his letter to pharmaceutical companies (PDF, 65.9KB, 3 pages) Matt Hancock asks suppliers to:

  • increase their medicines stocks by at least 6 weeks on top of their usual buffer stocks
  • ensure plans are in place to air freight products with a short shelf life that cannot be stockpiled

In his letter to suppliers of medical devices and clinical consumables (PDF, 62.3KB, 2 pages) he says that:

  • separate contingency plans are being developed
  • stock holding at a national level will be increased
  • further information will be provided to industry in September

The Department of Health and Social Care has published additional guidance for the pharmaceutical industry.

Six technical notices relating to health have been published by the government, covering:

  • unilateral recognition of batch testing of medicine
  • life sciences IT system
  • life sciences
  • tobacco-related products
  • organs, tissues, cells
  • blood safety and quality standards

Matt Hancock said:

The government has made significant progress in negotiations with the EU and remains confident we will leave with a good deal for both sides, that supports existing and future healthcare collaboration.

However, as a responsible government, we continue to prepare proportionately for all scenarios, including the unlikely outcome that we leave the EU without any deal in March 2019.

Given the significant amount of work that has now been done, I am confident this gives a clear basis for the health and care sector and the life sciences industry to plan so that patients can continue to receive high-quality care unhindered.

Published 23 August 2018