In the newly released state budget, the government also announces funds for clinical trials, mature clusters and digitalization.
The Norwegian government increases the funding for personalized medicine with NOK 30 million to a total of NOK 61.3 million. NOK 25 million will be used to establish precision diagnostics with advanced molecular profiling in the hospitals, which will give cancer patients a more precise diagnosis, reports Sofia Lindén, Communications Advisor at Oslo Cancer Cluster.
“The infrastructure for precision diagnostics will improve Norway’s ability to attract clinical studies internationally.”
“The infrastructure for precision diagnostics will improve Norway’s ability to attract clinical studies internationally, it will give more cancer patients the opportunity to participate in clinical trials and it will provide valuable data for further research,” says Ketil Widerberg, General Manager, Oslo Cancer Cluster.
The remaining funds for personalized medicine will be used to build competences and begin to establish a national genome centre.
Health innovation & Clinical studies
NOK 75 million will fund health innovation and clinical studies. The establishment of NorTrials, a partnership between industry and hospitals on clinical studies, will receive NOK 30 million. The aim of NorTrials is to offer a one-stop-shop for SMEs in the health industry and for public institutions that want to conduct clinical trials in Norway, explains Sofia Lindén.
The Norwegian government also proposes to establish a scheme to improve collaboration between industry and public institutions on health innovation, called Pilot Helse (Pilot Health). This scheme will receive NOK 20 million in funding.
Put Norwegian health industry on the agenda internationally
NOK 100 million will be used for strategic investments in export opportunities. Most of these funds, NOK 75 million, will go directly to the new unit Business Norway. Another NOK 20 million will strengthen the Norwegian mature clusters through Innovation Norway’s cluster programme. The remaining NOK 5 million will support Norwegian cultural export.
“The mature clusters can assume a central role in creating export opportunities for Norwegian industry abroad. The aim for Oslo Cancer Cluster is to put Norwegian health industry on the agenda internationally, and develop a leading European cancer innovation centre,” says Ketil Widerberg.
In 2021, NOK 40.9 billion will be used for research and development, which is 1.1 percent of Norway’s total BNP, reports Sofia Lindén.
The government also announced that Norway will participate in the EU programme Horizon Europe (2021-2027). It has a total budget of 75.9 billion euro over the entire period.
The budget for digitalization will be doubled next year: NOK 1.5 billion is set aside. NOK 56.2 million will be used for Norwegian participation in the Digital Europe Programme. Another NOK 16 million goes to the creation of a “Data Factory”, which will be set up by The Agency for Digitalization in cooperation with Digital Norway. It will provide services that will help small companies to develop business ideas and create value from data.
The newly established Health Analysis Platform, which will make it easier for scientists to conduct research on health data, gains another NOK 35 million.
“With the help of digital tools, we can develop new cancer medicines in 5 instead of 10 years”
“There is a massive unleashed potential in Norwegian health data, to create value for both industry and patients. Important hurdles and opportunities are addressed; however, we see the need for even more efforts to understand and treat illnesses like cancer better in the future. With the help of digital tools, we can develop new cancer medicines in 5 instead of 10 years,” says Ketil Widerberg.
Source: Oslo Cancer Cluster