DHACA Day – 18th March

We are now hopefully approaching a final version of the agenda, with the addition of Tina Woods and Lord Filkin opening our event describing the about-to-be-published All Party Policy Group on Longevity’s Health of the Nation Report. This proposes a national strategy for healthy longer lives. It is likely to kick off some great opportunities for DHACA members and their organisations.

The full agenda is here, where you can also book. Every speaker, apart from the brief Oxford Computer Consultants talk before lunch, has been handpicked by me based on past presentations I have heard or conversations I have had with the speakers so I do hope that this quality check plus the mix of topics will make the event very appealing, especially to those who have yet to book!

MDR – Medically Disastrous Regulation?

When I’m sent investment proposals to assess, the single most frequent area that is either ignored completely or seriously misunderstood is medical device regulation (the term “device” of course also covering software). It’s therefore extra-disappointing to see the very slow-motion MDR car crash that many have been predicting for a number of years still taking place without evident serious EU action to prevent or ameliorate it. No wonder proposers struggle with understanding when there is so little clarity on what is actually going to happen, or how the Notified Body capacity will ever be there to provide the appropriate guidance and certification services. Erik Vollebregt’s blog is a rare beacon of light in this area, and well worth signing up for updates. If you need more, Medtech Dive has useful articles too.

Will big pharma coalesce with digital health?

Attendees at last year’s DHACA Days will be aware of the continuing theme of pharma companies increasingly taking an interest in acquiring or partnering with digital health organisations. Indeed Neil Foster, Baker Bott’s senior life sciences partner in London, gave an excellent presentation on the topic at our November meeting. One of the drivers is that medication and technology combined can be significantly more effective at cure or treatment than either on their own. Another is that big pharma has long tentacles reaching into every corner of the health sector’s procurement operations; digital health organisations, in the main, have yet to grow those tentacles. This latter point in particular was discussed at length at the JPMorgan event in San Francisco last week, and is well summarised here. I’m sure we’ll see much more activity in this area in 2020!

And finally:

Hat tips to Dr Nicholas Robinson and Prof Mike Short for pointing me to items i’d otherwise have missed.

I do hope that many of you that have yet to can sign up for the next DHACA Day now and look forward to seeing you there, and at the pitch evening.

Kind regards,