IHI launches new funding round: calls 6 and 7

21 January 2024

The Innovative Health Initiative (IHI) has launched two new calls for proposals, IHI calls 6 and 7, addressing a wide range of challenges in health research and innovation.

Approximately EUR 120 million in funding from IHI is accessible through IHI calls 6 and 7. These funds are sourced from Horizon Europe, the European Union’s research and innovation funding program. IHI anticipates that its industry partners and, where applicable, contributing partners will match this amount with their own contributions.

The topics that will be launched under the new calls are:

Better management of heart disease

Heart disease affects millions of people in Europe alone, and numbers are rising due to people’s lifestyle and the ageing population. Today, there is no comprehensive approach to the detection, diagnosis and care of heart disease, and this has an impact on patients’ health and wellbeing. The aim of this topic is to ease the burden of heart disease by developing integrated solutions to improve all aspects of heart disease care, from early detection and diagnosis to treatment. Healthcare professionals will benefit from improved diagnostic procedures and clinical workflows, and this in turn will ensure that patients receive care that is tailored to their needs.

Towards the validation of biomarkers for clinical use

A lot of research focuses on identifying biological markers (biomarkers) that could offer clues to what disease a patient has, how the disease is progressing, and how well any treatments are working. However, very few biomarkers undergo the rigorous tests that would validate them for use in clinical settings. Furthermore, for some biomarkers, the technology that is needed to deploy them in the clinic is still in development. The aim of this topic is to advance towards clinical validation the development of promising candidate biomarkers and any innovative technologies needed for their use in the clinic.

Assistance for healthcare workers in hospitals

Healthcare workers in hospitals across Europe are facing increasing workloads and pressures, resulting in growing levels of stress and sick leave. Technologies could help to reduce the workload, but need to provide genuine added value and take healthcare workers’ needs into account. The aim of this topic is to develop innovative technologies that will support and assist the healthcare workforce in fields such as diagnostics, management and organisation, planning, or the delivery of complex interventions. Solutions should be data-driven and meet the needs of both healthcare workers and patients and their families.

Helping patients stick with their medication

Thanks to medical research, many chronic diseases can now be treated with medication. However, studies show that around half of all people living with a chronic disease do not take their prescribed medication for more than a year. The reasons for this are diverse, however this topic focuses specifically on healthcare-related barriers, such as poor communication between different stakeholders and a lack of patient support, as well as social barriers such as the stigma associated with certain illnesses and financial barriers. The aim of the topic is to develop new insights and models that will help to improve the proportion of patients sticking to their medication, with a particular focus on cardiometabolic diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease.

Practical guidance on the use of real-world data and evidence

Real-world data and evidence (RWD/RWE) are already widely used to support decision-making around medicines safety. However, while there is high-level guidance on using RWD/RWE in areas like regulatory and health technology assessment (HTA) submissions, practical implementation is left up to study sponsors and requires significant effort and expertise. The aim of this topic is to deliver structured, practical guidance and recommendations for industry, sponsors and others on the use of RWD/RWE to support decision-making by developers, regulators, HTA bodies and payers. The guidance should apply to drugs and medical devices as well as drug-device combinations.

IHI call 6 (two-stage call)

IHI call 7 (single-stage call)

For more information visit the website of IHI.

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