Select Committee on Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Sixth Report

7  Conclusion

140.  By introducing a new unified regulatory framework in the wake of the Pirbright outbreak, the Government's policy on biosecurity is moving in the right direction. It is now imperative that the resources to implement the new framework are put in place. The lack of co-ordination in the provision of high containment laboratories means that facilities may not be being provided in the most efficient way at present. To set up an inter-agency body to oversee the provision of high containment laboratories, as we have recommended in this Report, is the appropriate way forward. This will provide a forum in which to develop strategic oversight in the area of high containment research and to address issues such as funding for long-term maintenance and redevelopment projects on a cross-government and co-operative basis. The outbreak of FMDV at Pirbright highlights that in the long run, proper regulation, running and maintenance of high containment facilities is considerably cheaper than remedying a breach of biocontainment.

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