The changing landscape of the UK healthcare system

Rebecca Aris interviews Dr John Watkins

Consultant Public Health Medicine Committee member. NHS Wales, NICE, UK

The changing landscape in the UK healthcare system is a widely discussed topic and the outcomes widely speculated on. We speak with Professor John Watkins ahead of his speaking engagement at NextLevel pharma’s Unmet Medical Needs forum to hear his perspective.

John shares with us his thoughts on the impact that ageing populations, growing incidents of chronic disease and large patient populations are having on the healthcare system in the UK. In addition, John shares his thoughts on what the future holds for UK healthcare.

Click on the play button below to watch the video.

0:15 – John’s background and his current role.

1:11 – Key challenges faced by NICE in the current economic climate.

2:45 – How health outcomes research shape the treatment landscape for patients further down the line.

3:46 – How an aging population and current medical improvements impact on patient demographics.

5:15 – The results of the proposed UK healthcare reform and the role that healthcare technology assessment will play in the new landscape.

6:53 – How pharma has adapted its development processes to account for increasing cost-effectiveness assessment.

8:55 – How the pharma industry and bodies such as NICE can work together to balance the needs of chronic disease sufferers and patients with acute diseases.

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About the interviewee:

John Watkins is a Consultant in Public Health Medicine with Public Health Wales, PHW, and Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer in Epidemiology at Cardiff University, the consultant lead for chronic disease management and a specialist adviser to PHW and the Welsh Government, on Influenza and Pandemic planning, where he has chaired its Influenza Advisory Group. Prior to devolved regional government in the UK, John was a member of a scientific advisory group that helped the UK Department of Health develop Influenza vaccination policy. Formally he has been a Medical Director at Gwent Health Authority, for 11 years where he was responsible for all aspects of primary medical care in the area including prescription medication. Prior to his career in Medicine he completed a first class honours degree in Physics and went on to study for a PhD. He is a Visiting Professor at the University of Glamorgan.

Since 2009 John has been a member of one of NICE’s Technology Appraisal committees and is also a member of the All Wales Medicines Strategy Group.

John has an active research programme in a number of areas, particularly Influenza and other respiratory diseases and has published and lectured at home and abroad on this subject. His research has included studies on disease impact, both in adults and children, vaccine effectiveness and usage and the historical impact of pandemic disease.

His hobbies include, skiing, he is a rather ‘geriatric’ athlete and rugby player, DIY and flying light aircraft and lives in Monmouthshire with his wife and two daughters. John continues in active clinical practice as a GP in Newport, South Wales.

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