NHS' New Plan: 'Long-Termism' Is Also Needed In Adoption And Spread Of Technology In UK
The new "NHS Long Term Plan" is an opportunity for an expansive vision in the UK, but it will fall short in its ambitious aims if it merely defaults to old, failed concepts of annualized, silo-nature NHS budgeting. These have proven to be a persistent and significant barrier to the introduction of innovation, says Peter Ellingworth, chief executive of the Association of British HealthTech Industries (ABHI).
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Hopes are high for the NHS Long Term Plan’s ability to transform health-care delivery and make a potentially unsustainable service fit for the future. There are opportunities for diagnostics, devices and digital providers, but are the resources there to turn the Plan into a success story?
Often seen as complicated to access, beset with high entry barriers and with no guarantee of product adoption, the UK NHS is at once a lucrative and tricky market to succeed in for medtech innovators. A new MedTech Landscape Review, from the AHSN Network, has taken on the tasks of signposting and explaining the system, its adoption pathways and its various tools and programs, in an effort to point the way for manufacturers who want to access the NHS.
The over-running NHS England Long-Term Plan, to be released in full on Jan. 7, was a central discussion theme at the ABHI’s Market Conference last fall, an occasion that marked 30 years of the association’s support for industry. Early indications about the plan are that digital, early diagnosis, long-term and mental health care are among the key themes and challenges that will be addressed, and supported by the five-year funding boost announced last year. But is the cash settlement enough, and does the plan push the right buttons?