Earlier this week, the current Chief Executive Officer of the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) announced he would be leaving the role in the fall of 2019, sparking questions over who will be taking over the position post-Brexit.
“My reasons for stepping down are both personal and professional,” said Hudson. “I had always intended to reduce my total work commitment to enable me to pursue other things and perhaps have more of a portfolio career by the time I reached 60, which has now happened. I feel the time is right for a new person to guide the Agency and our work through its next phase, following the UK’s departure from the European Union next year.”
Hudson has worked with the MHRA for almost twenty years and has served as the regulator’s CEO for the past six years. While the agency hasn’t started looking for Hudson’s replacement, they should have enough time to find someone to take his place early in 2019 before he steps down later in the year.
“It has been a pleasure and privilege to have worked with so many able and committed people over the past 18 years,” said Hudson. “Our Agency makes a real difference to the health of millions of people in the UK, Europe and beyond, and it has been an honour to be part of that.”
Before joining the MHRA, Hudson was a practising pediatrician and later got involved in clinical research and pharmaceutical development. Since 2013, Hudson has acted as CEO of the MHRA, a position which is equivalent to Scott Gottlieb’s role as Commissioner of the FDA in the US.
“Although I will be standing down next autumn, my focus remains on ensuring the Agency delivers its essential contribution to public health, and I look forward to continuing to lead our work until September 2019,” said Hudson.
Hudson’s decision to leave the MHRA comes at a time when the regulator may be taking on more work than ever. Despite UK Prime Minister Teresa May’s assertion that she’d like to keep the nation under the jurisdiction of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) even after Brexit, it’s unclear whether this will be possible once the UK is dropped from the list of European Union (EU) member states.