ICPerMed provides a platform to initiate and support communication and exchange on personalised medicine research, funding and implementation. The high level of participation from all over Europe and beyond enables ICPerMed to efficiently map the scientific and political landscape. This allows an alignment of research and funding activities on European and later international level. Based on the solid knowledge of ongoing efforts, ICPerMed members will develop and agree on future research actions. In addition ICPerMed will identify the requirements for a suitable framework in terms of infrastructures, resources and regulatory procedures to foster the development and implementation of personalised medicine.
Thus, ICPerMed will contribute to the reasonable and fair implementation of personalised medicine approaches into the health systems for the benefit of patients, citizens and society as a whole.
ICPerMed aims to provide a flexible framework for cooperation between member organisations. For that purpose, a so-called International Consortium model is used. According to this model, the member organisations use their own funding rules and policy processes to contribute to the overall goals and objectives of the consortium. Members include public and private ‘not-for-profit’ health research funding and policy organisations. Although the current focus of the initiative is on Europe, organisations from other parts of the world are also included already and hopefully more will join in the near future.
ICPerMed was initiated during several workshops organised by the European Commission throughout 2016. The basis for this was the previous project, PerMed, that was funded from 2013-2015 by the European Union's 7th Framework Programme and brought together many organisations active in the area. PerMed already made clear that real progress in personalised medicine can only be achieved when research and implementation efforts are covering the entire value chain. This was documented in a Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda describing challenges and giving recommendations for advancing this field.
Within the ICPerMed structure, this approach of covering all aspects from basic research to clinical implementation, including also patient empowerment, market access and health care systems, is documented in its organisational structure (see governance).
The first action of the ICPerMed members was to refine the recommendations of PerMed and define "actionable research items" that can more or less directly be converted to research funding programmes on national, regional, European or even international level. The result was the publication of the ICPerMed Action Plan. With this ICPerMed Action Plan for the first time public and private ‘not-for-profit’ health research funding and policy organisations define funding actions ready for implementation. This Action Plan will facilitate consensus-building and decision-making processes in these organisations and thereby enable more concerted actions in this field in the near future.