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

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Gambling With Lives

Re-blogged with permission from Gambling With Lives by David Hills (@WanderinTeacake). The difference between maverick and quality experiment is that quality experiment is research – which new draft excludes. Dr Margaret McCartney has a way with words. When she tweeted the statement quoted above, she cut to the core – in less than 140 characters – of one of the major problems with the Medical…

Prof Baum’s concerns about the Saatchi Bill

Prof Michael Baum has written to his MP to express his concerns about the Saatchi Bill. Will you join him? Dear Mike, I’m deeply concerned about the Saatchi bill. I have been involved in cancer research for 45 years and through challenging dogma have been responsible for many innovations that have improved the length and quality of life of countless…