Health minister launches new fund to help healthcare innovation

A doctor checking the pulse of a patient on an infusion

Health minister Bruno Bruins plans to establish a new €105m fund to speed up the availability of new drugs and medical technologies to patients and to establish the effectiveness of existing treatments.

Grants will be available to organisations developing new healthcare ideas so that they can pay for development and research. Proven efficacy is needed before a treatment or product is included in the basic health insurance package and this can prove a stumbling block to developers, Bruins said.

In particular, small firms, hospitals and individual researchers tend to give up before a product is available for patients. ‘This new fund will enable them to take this last step,’ Bruins said in his briefing to MPs.

Later this year, Bruins will publish more details about how the fund will tackle new drugs and a programme to evaluate existing treatments.

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