"The medicines bill has to be put into the context of the overall healthcare spend," says ABPI's Barker. "In the UK, we have
an average per capita level of healthcare spending, but the spend on medicines is well below average." He adds that the primary
care trusts, which are responsible for healthcare spending at a local level, are unable to budget for new medicines because
they don't take a long-term view—they budget only in the short term. This fundamental area of being able to find the money
to pay for innovations is one area that the new council will have to address.
Brooksby agrees that this short-term thinking cannot be good for the long-term sustainability of either healthcare provision
or the pharma industry. "It would be easy for me to run my company to make a huge profit for the next few months," he says.
"But there wouldn't be much of a company left next year!"