UK joins international coalition to fast-track cutting-edge treatments to patients 

By - World Healthcare Journal

Following the departure of the UK from the EU, the country is now set to join two international organisations, known as “Project Orbis” and “Access consortium”, which both aim to provide new, innovative, high-quality, and safe treatments to patients.

Through joining together with leaders in healthcare regulation from around the world, the UK entering this collaboration could bring NHS patients even better levels of treatment, and ensure quicker access to potentially life-saving medicines.

“I will stop at nothing to make sure NHS patients can access life-saving treatments as quickly as possible and now we have left the EU, we have an opportunity to speed up the time it takes to get new medicines from bench to bedside,” says UK Health Secretary, Matt Hancock.

“I’m delighted the UK will be teaming up with some of the world’s best regulators to put patients first by fast-tracking cutting edge medicines after the transition period,” he continued.

Project Orbis, a programme coordinated by the US Food and Drug Administration, has already given the green light to many life-saving treatments for patients suffering from many cancers including lung, breast, liver, endometrial, and leukaemia.

Through collaboration on cancer treatments between international regulators, this provides an opportunity for patients to receive faster access to life-saving treatments in other countries, as we have seen in recent times with the remarkable innovation of Proton Beam Therapy.

Both organisations also aim to ensure that patient safety and scientific integrity is upheld to the highest standards, while at the same time working to remove red tape and launch medicines onto the international market.

“Project Orbis stemmed from a monthly teleconference the FDA held with other regulators for about 15 years, which indicated that the US often receives applications first - sometimes months or even years before other countries,” says Richard Pazdur, MD, Director, FDA Oncology Center of Excellence.

“We decided to address this by partnering with other countries and asking the pharmaceutical companies to submit applications to several regulators at about the same time, to provide early entry of these applications into their regulatory systems. To date, our partners include Australia, Canada, Singapore, Switzerland, and Brazil. We are pleased to welcome the UK’s MHRA to this collaborative programme. ”

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