Europe – United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union (‘Brexit’ Update)

On 29 March 2017, the United Kingdom (UK) notified the European Council of its intention to withdraw from the European Union (EU), a process known as 'Brexit'. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is making preparations to ensure that it can continue to deliver on its mission and protect public and animal health after the UK leaves the EU.

Update: As of early October 2019, EMA’s total workforce was roughly 730 which is a further 6% reduction compared to June 2019. Interim arrangements allowing staff to telework from London due to their personal circumstances have largely come to an end.

Due to the ongoing resource constraints, delivery of EMA’s work programme for the last quarter of 2019 will be challenging, particularly in view of the need to implement new legislation for veterinary medicines and medical devices, which will bring additional workload.

In order to be best prepared to address future challenges with the existing workforce, EMA is reviewing its organisational structure and looking to set up task forces that will focus on key priorities for the European medicines regulatory network such as digital business transformation, data analytics and methods, regulatory science and innovation and clinical trials and manufacturing strategy.

EMA plans to integrate operations in the area of human medicines to strengthen the therapeutic focus all along a medicine’s lifecycle, with the aim of assuring the quality of scientific opinions and further improving support to EMA’s scientific committees.

Overall, this will ensure that EMA is geared up for the future with more efficient processes firmly rooted in digital technology to keep pace with rapid advances in science. EMA will share more information with stakeholders in due course.

EMA continuously reviews and adapts its business continuity plan as necessary…