World-changing innovations are just around the corner?

An excellent article in The Times (published Saturday, 27 June, 2020)

If biotech transforms our health in the coming decade it will be through the creativity of individuals unconstrained by red tape, says Matt Ridley.

I believe it is a extract from his book ‘How Innovation Works’.  He comments that people overestimate the impact of a new technology in the short run, but underestimate it in the long run.  Probably because of the hype needed to raise the funds to pay for development.  Perhaps more relevantly he sees Biotech as the next sector to take-off.  However, he points out that governments have to prepare the necessary environment by de-regulating where it is appropriate to do so.  For example, in 2016 BusinessEurope did a study that found that the EU medical devices directive (MDD) had resulted in significantly fewer yet more expensive new medical devices than would otherwise come forward.  As the EU (and UK) are moving to even stricter regulations (New Medical Device Regulations (MDR) – due to come into force May 2020 but now May 2021 – things are going from bad to worse.  The Covid-19 pandemic has illustrated the need for better biotech, let us hope the UK / EU governments recognise that need to foster innovation and return to a benefit-versus-safety balance rather than safety being paramount.

The safest ship is the one that never leaves harbour.

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