Healthcare: ABPI taps Hanover for lobbying brief

Hanover has been brought in by the pharmaceutical industry's trade body to help promote key messages to politicians and regulators in the run-up to the next general election.

The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has given the agency the task of handling messaging concerned with maintaining the UK's position as a leading research and development destination.

Hanover will also support ABPI's drive to reduce obstacles to establishing and running clinical trials in the UK.

The appointment coincides with the publication of plans by the UK's Office for Life Sciences (OLS) earlier this month. The blueprint included proposals to allow some innovative drugs to bypass the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) through an 'innovation pass'.

Part of Hanover's brief includes supporting ABPI's plans to work with NICE to establish criteria and implementation of the innovation pass.

ABPI has also asked Hanover to engage politicians with interests in health, innovation and business from all parties. It will particularly focus on strengthening and broadening relationships with the Conservatives, recognising the possibility of a change in government.

Separately, ABPI is losing government affairs manager Rachel Cashman. She is leaving to join pharma firm Pfizer next month.

Cashman joined ABPI in the newly created role last year from her position as head of public affairs and external relations at the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (PRWeek, 25 January 2008).

ABPI is currently recruiting for her replacement.

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