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Paddington Life Sciences Launch: Leading Organisations Join Forces in London

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Today saw the launch of an influential partnership group made up of NHS, industry, community, and academic organisations with a shared commitment to generating healthcare innovation, alongside health, economic, and social value, through a new life sciences cluster centred around St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington.

Paddington Life Sciences: The details

Paddington Life Sciences Partners will be a key driver of the Paddington Life Sciences development announced by Imperial College Healthcare – the NHS trust that runs St Mary’s – last year.

The regeneration of Paddington and the huge investment in transport infrastructure, including the Elizabeth Line, is already drawing pharmaceutical, biotech, data and technology businesses to the area, joining major local landowners with significant life sciences interests. Establishing more structured collaboration with St Mary’s – a major research and teaching hospital serving a large and diverse local community – is now creating a life sciences ecosystem opening up a range of opportunities to expand and accelerate innovation and to improve health and wellbeing, locally and globally.

Members of Paddington Life Sciences Partners have committed to, and are investing in, developing a life sciences cluster in Paddington that achieves major health, social and economic value. There are also associate members that have a strategic advisory role and may also support specific projects.

Paddington Life Sciences Partners are: British Land, Brockton Everlast, Derwent London, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, Imperial College London, IQVIA, Microsoft, Optum, Oracle Health, Takeda, The Paddington Partnership, Vertex and Vodafone. The Associate Partners are: Imperial College Health Partners and Imperial Health Charity.

Paddington Life Sciences Partners have agreed to work together to improve health and reduce inequalities through four key areas of focus:

• Social value – supporting local communities and tackling inequalities through community engagement, increasing access to education and employment, and improving digital inclusion.

• Diversity and inclusion in clinical trials – working with local communities to coproduce approaches to increasing diversity in clinical trials and to influence clinical research practice, such as by training and supporting community champions.

• Data and digital – using collective data analytics expertise, secure data environments and real-world evidence to improve care.

• Place and space – promoting Paddington as a highly desirable location for life sciences business to start, develop and grow.

The full realisation of Paddington Life Sciences will come with the redevelopment of St Mary’s and regeneration of the wider site. A full rebuild of St Mary’s is included in the Government’s New Hospital Programme. Following the recent announcement that the delivery of some schemes – including St Mary’s – would be pushed out beyond the original commitment of 2030, the Trust is accelerating work with the New Hospital Programme and other partners to explore phasing, design and funding options to keep the scheme on track for a 2030 delivery. As well as delivering a new, state-of-the-art hospital, the redevelopment is intended to create an additional 1.5 million square feet of cross-functional commercial and lab space for life sciences businesses.

The Launch Event

So far, the launch has seen various speakers – opening the event, Professor Tim Orchard, CEO of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trusts, highlighted the huge achievements in health and life sciences innovation that have led to improved patient outcomes and said that no other health system in the world has the breadth or depth of health data of the NHS.

Moreover, the Director of Communities at City Westminster Serena Simon tells the launch of Paddington Life Sciences that community is at the heart of what the council is doing, and it starts to build trust.

Vice President of Strategic Planning at IQVIA, Angela McFarlane, also delivered a speech and said that Lord O’Shaughnessy’s report on commercial clinical trials sets out a strong roadmap to make the UK a global leader in life sciences.

Responses

Dr Bob Klaber, Imperial College Healthcare director of strategy, research and innovation said: “research and innovation are fundamental to the clinical excellence our hospitals are renowned for. From the Nobel-prize winning discovery of penicillin at St Mary’s in 1928, to now where, with Imperial College London, we run the largest NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, undertaking hundreds of clinical trials and analysing data from well over a million patient contacts each year. Through the pandemic, many more patients and staff have been encouraged to get involved in research and we are confident this trend will grow. Paddington Life Sciences Partners are working together to improve not just healthcare but also health, wealth and wellbeing, creating synergies that will boost education, skills development and employment opportunities in some of the most deprived areas of the UK.”

Dr Suki Balendra, director of strategic partnerships for Paddington Life Sciences, added “Paddington Life Sciences is set to be a research and economic powerhouse, driven by collaboration with our brilliant cross-sector partners. It has been inspiring to convene the group in the last year and collaborate on tangible initiatives that will improve health and reduce inequalities. I look forward to realising the potential of what we can do together to achieve our mission: connecting our local communities to a future of better health.”

Final thought

The launch of the new Paddington Life Sciences cluster is exciting; the aim to accelerate innovation and improve health and wellbeing in the UK through a strong partnership demonstrates a positive initiative with much potential.

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