Responding to the government statement on medicine supply after Brexit, Niall Dickson, co-chair of the Brexit Health Alliance and chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said:
“The government says leaving the EU with a deal remains its top priority and so it should be. To make sure patients are protected we need an agreement with a transition period – ‘no deal’ in spite of all this effort means more risk.
“The government has responded to calls by the Brexit Health Alliance for more information on medicines and medical devices. Today’s detail about additional freight capacity, airplane use, buffer stocks and extra warehouse space will help to support local preparations.
“This is vital because around three quarters of the medicines and over half the clinical consumables we use come from, or via, the European Union.
“We recognise the enormous effort that has gone into making these plans as robust as possible. However, too much of this is outside of the control of the NHS and our members. That is why we continue to advocate for a negotiated deal to provide maximum protection for patients.”
Layla McCay, the NHS Confederation’s Director of International Relations, said: “And if there is no deal, we believe it will be completely unacceptable for both sides not to allow all essential medical supplies to flow freely until a proper agreement is reached.”