Exploring Funding Mechanisms for Investigator-Initiated Clinical Studies: Highlights from the ERA4Health Workshop
The second ERA4Health workshop hosted by ECRIN on Funding Mechanisms for Investigator-Initiated Clinical Studies, was held on 8-9 February 2024, in Brussels and brought together funders, clinical study experts, EMA (ACT EU), the European Commission and HaDEA representatives. Its goal was to explore funding for multinational investigator initiated clinical studies (IICS), addressing public health needs.
The workshop began with opening remarks by Monica Ensini, Scientific Officer at HaDEA A3 Health Research, and Cristina Nieto, the ERA4Health coordinator from ISCIII. Marta del Álamo, ECRIN, shed light on significant challenges and bottlenecks associated with funding mechanisms for investigator-initiated clinical studies. The workshop continued with presentations from different initiatives currently funding or planning to fund multinational studies in different topics (infectious diseases, cancer, vaccines, rare diseases, comparative-effectiveness) and set ups (European, international).
Models and funding strategies introduced throughout the first day of the workshop laid the foundation for the second day. Reserved for ERA4Health partners, it focused on discussions of possible adaptations of the current Joint Transnational Call funding mechanism to the objectives, of the planned ERA4Health Pilot Call on IICS.
Overall, the ERA4Health workshop provided a dynamic platform for stakeholders to exchange insights, address challenges, and pave the way for collaborative efforts in advancing investigator-initiated clinical studies for the betterment of public health. We thank all the participants for their invaluable contributions. ECRIN will continue to work with the funders in ERA4Health and other stakeholders to support the creation of a sustainable funding mechanism for IICS relying on the work carried out in this workshop.