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Can med tech deliver the future – through the keyhole?
MPs, healthcare professionals and patients join MTG at House of Commons

Helen Whately MP hosted Medical Technology Group members and over 150 parliamentarians, healthcare professionals and patient representatives at a reception on the terrace at the House of Commons in November, one of several activities making up the fifth annual Medical Technology Week (27th November – 1st December 2017).

The theme in 2017 was the economic and social value of medical technology.  The MTG’s new report “Keeping Britain Working: How medical technology can help reduce the cost of ill health to the UK economy” explains and analyses the opportunity for reduced long-term health costs and benefit payments through greater use of med tech devices in the NHS.  Guests were able to examine a range of technologies and listen to presentations from four individuals whose lives have been transformed through med tech.

Opening the event, Chair of the MTG Barbara Harpham highlighted the £476 million in savings that the NHS could make through greater adoption of just eight patient technologies. The number is made up from reduced NHS costs through shorter hospital stays and reduced patient dependencies, and from lower benefit payments as patients would be able to return to work more quickly.  It doesn’t include the far greater economic and social value of having people back in work paying taxes, or being active members of their local communities.

Helen Whately MP, whose father was involved in the early days of keyhole surgery, spoke about the revolution that keyhole surgery had led to in hospital efficiency. “It enabled people to have things done and out on the same day – things that used to involve people staying in hospital for the best part of a week!  That change came from technology – and it allows us to make better use of all the resources and taxpayers money that we put into healthcare today and in the future.”

The next four speakers illustrated very effectively the incredible impact that med tech has had on real lives.  Whether helping to eradicate morbid obesity or manage severe spinal damage, Type 1 diabetes or cardiomyopathy, modern medical devices have transformed lives. Find out more about their stories here.

In her closing remarks, Barbara Harpham said getting people back to work and back to being a part of their local community is key. “Not giving patients access to these lifesaving and life reaffirming devices is simply a false economy for the NHS.”

December 2017

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