Lessons from the COVID-19 response can help us combat currentand future public health challenges

Government, health systems and industry worked in tandem like never before to develop effective responses to the coronavirus. It is vital that these learnings are translated into more effective ways of developing new technologies, effective diagnosing and treating people.

Dame Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive of the UK Health Security Agency, recently reflected that improved working between public bodies and the life sciences industry was essential in coordinating an effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr Harries’ recommendations were clear that this collaboration should progress further to ensure that the UK is well placed to identify and plan for emerging health threats and improve targeted healthcare for the population.

As UK country lead for Thermo Fisher Scientific I was proud to work alongside industry and Government colleagues to scale up projects, technology and infrastructure at short notice. We were intrinsically involved in supporting UK health authorities, private testing laboratories, biotech and the pharma industry – from laboratory development, antigen and antibody test production to vaccine research, clinical trials, approval and manufacture.

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