The process for innovators bringing their products to the NHS is still lengthy and complex, says the Medical Technology Group (MTG) in its latest Deja Review report. However, the Government has shown that it is committed to using medical technology to address some of the issues facing the NHS. With further measures – such as a single pathway for innovation – there is hope for the future, says MTG’s Chair, Barbara Harpham.
How can we best bring the benefits of medical technology to the NHS? Over the past two decades, one of the great success stories of the health service has been the utilisation of a number of technologies and innovations that have transformed the lives of patients, improved efficiencies among clinicians, and saved the health service money.
This trend was very much accelerated over the pandemic. Those hospitals that fared best in working through the backlog and keeping down waiting times took a holistic approach to the adoption of data innovation and technology across their pathways.
In the recent past, the NHS has been described as having ‘innovation paralysis’. Last December, Lord Bethell and Lord Victor Adebowale waved a ‘red flag’ with regards to the uptake of innovation and medical technology. In The Times, Professor Nora Colton, director of the newly established School for Global Health at University College, London, highlighted Denmark as a health system the NHS should emulate, built on the backbone of data and medical technology.
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