FasterCures: 2019 In Review

FasterCures: 2019 In Review

Building a system where better treatments get to those who need them as rapidly as possible.

Our 2019 Work at a Glance

FasterCures' focus in 2019 was to ensure our mission was well-understood and aligned with our programmatic work. To establish consistency and impact, we had three areas of focus this year:

  • Elevating the patient’s voice, so that medical research better reflects their experiences, needs, and insights.

  • Aligning incentives for R&D, so that promising science is fully realized. 

  • Accelerating innovation in data and technology, delivering the next generation of targeted treatments.

2019 Highlights

  • Early in the year, we launched the BRIDGE Initiative, an effort that seeks to create a more dynamic market for biomedical innovation by leveraging new business, research, transaction, and financing models so more treatments can reach patients. 

  • Over the summer, we convened organizations to discuss how patient-generated insights can be better leveraged by researchers, companies, payers, patient advocates, and other healthcare decision-makers. We are calling this new program the Patient Insight Navigator, and working with our partners, we plan to create an online clearinghouse of information about existing resources in a useful and engaging way. There will be more to share in 2020, but we’re excited about how this effort will transform the biomedical innovation sector in the years to come. 

  • We launched Cures for Life, a project to elevate patient voices in the discussion around cell and gene therapies, an issue that will play a significant role in the debate around cost and access in 2020 and beyond. 

  • We continued our work to create a biomedical innovation scorecard, and working with RAND Europe, we developed a set of “domains” that will allow our community to better understand the areas we need to measure to ensure we have a system that is pointed toward the future and works for patients. As part of this initiative, we have developed a “use case” for oncology with key stakeholders, as a way to see how these issues play out in real life. 

Related to this, we launched a partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and their Accelerating Clinical Innovation initiative, which will help expand America’s understanding of the speed and efficiency of the biomedical “innovation system.”

In Case You Missed It

This year, we released papers focused on Data Sharing for Patient Organizations and Researchers, we looked at the role the 21st Century Cures legislation played for women’s health, and how to develop patient-focused drug development meetings.

We also participated in the Milken Institute’s Global Conference as well as the Future of Health Summit, which brought together leaders from all sectors of the system to discuss, debate, and shares insights on the most pressing healthcare issues. Take some time this holiday season to browse videos from these gatherings, and read the Power of Ideas series of essays.

Coming up in 2020

If 2019 is any indication, 2020 will be another busy year for us focused on our programmatic areas. We look forward to launching our FasterCures LeadersLink program, which will invest in the future of biomedical research by supporting the personal development of an emerging cadre of leaders of nonprofit organizations. Applications will be accepted starting in January.

TRAIN, our capacity building effort for patient-driven foundations that fund medical research, will continue its work in 2020, with a focus on programming for a curated group of mid-maturity organizations that will benefit from this type of collaboration and resource-building. If you are interested in learning more about this initiative, send us an email

We will be inaugurating a new program in 2020, related to the role of health data and technology play in accelerating innovation, and putting patient insight and experience in the center of the research. Why health data and technology? Simply put, nothing we do to accelerate research and treatments for patients is done without some amount of data changing hands. We look forward to building this area of work in collaboration with our community.