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They were joined by over 200 guests, including Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock, who delivered the keynote speech. Hancock – taking no doubt a welcome break from the Brexit debate next door – praised the HealthTech sector, and the role it plays in keeping the UK healthy. The HealthTech industry was likened to the pharma industry in terms of the support he hopes to see it enjoy from the NHS. Interestingly, the ABHI document “The Role of HealthTech in Improving Lives” lists falling confidence in the NHS as a place to launch innovations as a significant barrier to growth in the industry. Brexit uncertainty and procurement challenges were also concerns.
The mood in the room however was upbeat – exports, investment and staffing levels are all expected to increase in 2019, and the companies we spoke to are all positive about the future.
The evening also saw the launch of ABHI’s HealthTech Savvy campaign, which encourages MPs to engage with their local NHS Trusts to see first-hand how HealthTech is improving the lives of their constituents. Matt Hancock and Derek Thomas MP, who hosted the event in his capacity as a member of the Health and Social Care Committee, dutifully added their names to the campaign.
There followed a drinks reception, and Alex, Chris and Marianne spoke with other delegates and shared views about the MedTech industry.
MP Matt Hancock adding his name to the HealthTech campaign
MP Derek Thomas adding his name to the HealthTech campaign
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