SAPHIRe has launched its Observatory, an online database that allows the public to search for a region in Europe and which will provide an overview of regional activities in personalised medicine, as well as links to policy documents and major initiatives. Having all this information collated and available in one place, the Observatory will be extremely useful for regional policymakers, funders and other key stakeholders to share relevant information on their policies, projects and innovation activities related to personalised medicine.
In July SAPHIRe launched a survey to gain insight into the current status of personalised medicine-related policies and activities across European regions. The information collected in the survey was used to develop the Observatory. As the Observatory is meant to be a living document and continued information gathering is crucial, the survey can still be accessed and regular updates of the Observatory are planned.
At present, the personalised medicine landscape in Europe is fragmented, and, it is not clear what policies and strategies exist. It is also unclear what personalised medicine-related activities and initiatives European regions are involved in.
SAPHIRe's aim is to help structure the adoption and implementation of personalised medicine at regional level by creating favourable ecosystems. This however, is a particularly challenging task; regions have many different developmental needs, and readiness levels are complicated by many factors, including the fact that policies emanate from many levels including EU, national and regional level, on a multitude of topics such as research, innovation, healthcare, data protection and socio-economic issues.
The information collected in the survey will also form part of SAPHIRe's mapping exercise, which will provide SAPHIRe with an insight into specific regional needs and requirements. This will provide SAPHIRe with information about regions' current personalised medicine-related activity, and, will feed into development of the SAPHIRe Stakeholder Platform. Ultimately this Platform will be a forum for joint regional collaboration, design, partnering, and identification of opportunities for joint actions between regions.
The Observatory has been launched as a pilot phase with nine regions currently in the database. The second phase of regions will be added in early 2020. The database will serve as a dynamic tool and we encourage regional stakeholders to contact us with updates.
Dr Sorcha Finnegan, SAPHIRe Programme Manager, research and Development Division, Public Health Agency Northern Ireland, Sorcha.email@example.com