BIA action and guidance on COVID-19

Key information and updates on the COVID-19 situation for BIA member companies and the life sciences sector

Latest updates:

Easing of restrictions

On 12 April, lockdown restrictions eased. They are due to ease again on 17 May. You can view the rules on what you can and cannot do here

Lockdown 3.0

On 4 January, Boris Johnson announced that the UK would go into a third lockdown on 6 January. The lockdown is due to last for six weeks, but may be extended. The lockdown was ratified in Parliament on 6 January. 

As with prevous lockdowns, this lockdown will not impact on medical products manufacturing, trials or other work that cannot be conducted from home.

NIHR guidance to ensure research protected in a 'second wave'

NIHR has issued guidance on protecting research during a 'second wave' of COVID-19. This includes staff funded by NIHR not being deployed to frontline duties, and maintains the study priortisation levels set out in May.

Update Government support - Winter Economy Plan

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has published a Winter Economy Plan with a number of measures to help businesses and employees.

The plan extends the Government's three Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Schemes, which includes the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme, the Bounce Back Loan Scheme and the Future Fund. The loan schemes and Future Fund are available on the British Business Bank website. Businesses that have already taken out loans will be given the opportunity to repay their loan over a ten year period. A new Job Support Scheme will also be introduced from 1 November to protect 'viable' jobs. 

Certain Life Sciences professionals are exempt from the 14-day post-travel quarantine requirements

The Government has released information that certain life science professionals are exempt from the 14-day post-travel quarantine requirements. 

NIHR restart guidance

The NIHR has published a ‘Framework for restart’ , which is a guidance document to support local decision-making

Government financial support schemes launched

The Innovate UK coronavirus business support package and British Business Bank Future Fund schemes are now open for applications.

New EU funding for coronavirus projects

The European Commission has announced a new €122 million Horizon2020 funding call for coronavirus projects. Deadline for applications is 11 June 2020. 

BIA Covid-19 webinars

Register for our next COVID-19 webinar and use the links below to watch our previous COVID-19 webinars:


BIA Charity Partnership of the Year: Versus Arthritis

BIA is working with Versus Arthritis as our charity partner for 2020. In response to the Covid-19 crisis, Versus Arthritis are continuing to stand by, support and speak up for people living with arthritis. They are helping those who are self-isolating at home, supporting loved ones or caring for those in the community.

Information about how Versus is responding to Coronavirus

Support Versus Arthritis