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Friday, January 15th, 2021

DOE, HHS, and VA join forces to create COVID-19 Insights Partnership

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The Department of Energy (DOE), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are working together to share health data as well as research and expertise to aid in the fight against COVID-19.

The initiative between these three government agencies is called the COVID-19 Insights Partnership. The partnership creates a framework for HHS and VA to utilize DOE’s high-performance computing (HPC) and artificial intelligence resources to conduct COVID-19 research and analyze health data that would otherwise not be possible.

“This unprecedented data and computing partnership is the latest addition to President Trump’s whole-of-government effort against COVID-19,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar said. “The volume and quality of the data HHS has on COVID-19 has advanced by leaps and bounds in recent months. The Department of Energy’s world-class resources will help us derive new insights from the data we gather to help patients and protect our country.”

Research conducted by the COVID-19 Insights Partnership will focus on vaccine and therapeutic development and outcomes, virology, and other topics to understand COVID-19 better.

“The Department of Energy is proud to be a member of the COVID-19 Insights Partnership,” Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette said. “Our nation’s understanding of COVID-19 has already benefitted greatly from our world-leading high-performance computing and artificial intelligence resources, and we look forward to continuing our coordination across Federal departments and agencies in the fight against this virus.”

The United States’ fastest supercomputer, Summit, is located at DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Summit is accelerating COVID-19 research by running large-scale, complex analyses on a vast amount of health data. This will help researchers identify and advance potential treatments and enhance outcomes for COVID-19 patients with unprecedented speed.

“Veterans served this country by putting on the uniform and protecting American interests overseas, and now their health data will help us win the fight against COVID-19 here at home,” VA Secretary Robert Wilkie said.