Stop the Saatchi Bill

Driven by an extraordinary two-year PR campaign on social media and a supportive newspaper partner, this all started as Lord Saatchi’s Medical Innovation Bill, metamorphosed through several versions, and was resurrected under a new name by Chris Heaton-Harris, before finally clearing its last hurdle in the Lords this week to become the Access to Medical Treatments (Innovation) Act. Pretty much the only thing they share is the word 'Innovation' in the title.

One day, it may be possible for politicians to ask the people who actually work in the medical field: what are the problems you face, and how can we help you overcome them?

One day, politicians may actually listen to the answers they receive, and thus try to tackle genuine problems rather than imagined ones.

One day, politicians, medics, researchers, lawyers, patient groups, charities, and the public, may work together to overcome the barriers to the development and provision of new treatments.

But it is not this day.

Read more: Not this day

Monthly Archives: February 2015

The Medical Innovation Bill – In a Nutshell

Re-blogged with permission from The Medical Innovation Bill – In a Nutshell by Nigel Poole QC The Medical Innovation Bill has passed to the House of Commons from the House of Lords. The purpose of the bill is to promote responsible medical innovation. The means by which innovation is promoted in the bill is by seeking to reduce or remove the…

Quackographic

The Saatchi Bill campaign has come up with an infographic showing how they claim the Bill would work in practice. Although I’ve already produced a flowchart to show where that infographic is wrong (spoiler alert: it’s wrong about everything), the estimable @lexistwit has gone one further, and created his own replacement for the infographic itself. Here’s how it should have…

Into the Commons

The Medical Innovation Bill was sent to the House of Commons following its Third Reading in the House of Lords on 23 January 2015. The Third Reading followed the usual format for these debates: more politeness and deference but not very much real scrutiny and analysis. There were just two amendments proposed: one by Lords Winston and Saatchi and one by Lord Hunt…

Bil Arloesi Meddygol? Wales votes No

Re-blogged with permission from Bil Arloesi Meddygol? Wales votes No by Sofia The Welsh Assembly votes unanimously against Saatchi Bill Vote in the Senedd clear: National Assembly for Wales united against Saatchi Bill a solution in search of a problem and not a very sound solution at that Previous post on LCM here. The National Assembly for Wales debated the Medical…

The GMC: There is still no convincing argument

Re-blogged with permission from The GMC: There is still no convincing argument by Sofia The GMC tweeted a link yesterday highlighting its current position on the Medical Innovation Bill. This was a link to this month’s accountability hearing where the GMC provided oral evidence to the Health Committee in the House of Commons. At this hearing questions were asked about the…

Treatment Under the Saatchi Bill

Okay, my post earlier today about how the Medical Innovation Bill would really work (as opposed to how the bill team claims it would work seems to have generated quite a bit of discussion, so I thought it would be worth running through my flowchart quickly with you to show my working out, as it were. Here are links to…

The Medical Innovation Register

Re-blogged with permission from The Medical Innovation Register by Nigel Poole QC The new selling point for the Saatchi Bill is that it will lead to the creation of a new and important data base of innovative treatments. As seems often to be the case with the Bill, it pays to look behind the claims and check the reality. At its…

Under The Bus

I hadn’t expected to be returning so soon to the subject of the Saatchi Bill consultation. But after I wrote my post criticising how their actions had undermined that consultation, the Saatchi bill team have responded. Yes indeed, and what a response it is. I’m going to assume you’re familiar with the bill, and with the arguments in my previous post…

Bad Consultation, Bad Bill

[Since I wrote my previous article on the consultation process for the Medical Innovation Bill, there have been a number of developments, most importantly the publication of the Department of Health’s own report into the consultation. The article you are now reading is intended to replace the earlier one – you do not need to read the original in order…