Updated on 20 November 2012
How long will it take for the government to implement the key recommendations?
The government has made a good start in implementing the key recommendations but I believe it will take 12 months or more for international sponsors of clinical research to fully realize significant helpful changes have been made.
There is still a problem of researchers from universities, district health boards, and crown research institutes, as well as private research institutes having to scrap over small pots of money. Hopefully this will improve as the economy gets better and the researchers learn to lever off industry and the private sector. I also hope the new Ministry of Economic Development, Science, and Innovation and Housing will proactively seek out international sponsors to carry out clinical research and joint venture commercialization projects in New Zealand. This includes the whole spectrum of clinical trials on drugs, bioactives, and medical devices.
What is next on the agenda of the committee?
The Health Select Committee has requested Mr Murray Horne, chairman of the new innovation hub, to brief us on progress by the end-of-the-year, and I will suggest at least regular briefings until we are satisfied that the clinical trial environment is as good as it can be. In the meantime, apart from the routine business of the committee, we have initiated an inquiry into improving children's outcomes with a particular focus on pre-conception to the first three years.