Oncopole, the result of a unique co-creation process by the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS), made possible by an initial investment of $15 million from Merck Canada, plays a key role in Quebec’s oncology ecosystem. It works to mobilize stakeholders to support research projects and foster the discovery of innovations to have a positive impact on patients.
The current health crisis has taught us many lessons, not least the need for better coordination between research, innovation and the health and social services system. Oncopole’s priority is to reconcile these sectors in oncology, and to overcome their frequent compartmentalization. Oncopole has joined forces with a number of key partners to develop two competitions: Innove-Onco and Priorité patient. The results of these programs will be known shortly.
Innove-Onco competition aims to optimize adoption of innovations in oncology
Oncopole has launched Innove-Onco, a funding program developed in partnership with the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS), the Innovation Bureau, the Programme québécois de cancérologie of the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux, and in collaboration with the Institut national d’excellence en santé et services sociaux (INESSS). Thanks to an additional contribution of $200,000 from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), the total budget for the competition is $1,700,000, providing funding for two projects over 2 years. Innove-Onco’s overall objective is to bring together the improvement of clinical practices, the integration of innovation and research in oncology. At the same time, it will be an opportunity to better understand the factors that facilitate or limit the integration of innovations. An announcement of the recipients will follow shortly.
Patient First competition aims to improve the care and service experience for patients and their caregivers
Oncopole also offers the Priorité patient grant program, in partnership with the FRQS and the Unité de soutien à la stratégie de recherche axée sur le patient (SRAP) du Québec, and with the collaboration of the Programme québécois de cancérologie (PQC) of the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux. The total budget for the competition is $600,000, with a maximum amount awarded per project of $200,000 over 2 years.
The aim of Patient First is to fund research projects that will improve the care and service experience, as well as the quality of life of cancer patients and their families. Patient involvement is at the heart of this program. Oncopole’s patient-partner committee raised a number of issues to be addressed by the selected projects; the evaluation committee is made up in part of patients; and each participating project team must include at least one patient or caregiver.
“We are very proud to support promising oncology research projects as part of these two programs linking research, innovation and care. These initiatives are a concrete illustration of our cluster’s key role in mobilizing teams and partners around innovative projects and programs aimed at improving patient care,” emphasizes Renaldo Battista, General Manager of Oncopole.
After 3 years in existence, Oncopole intends not only to continue supporting the most promising oncology projects, but also to consolidate its essential role in harmonizing the actions and strategies of the various players in the cancer field, and to have a direct impact on cancer patients.