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Sunday, December 5th, 2021

HHS unveils public-private partnership with Global Health Investment Corporation, its first venture capital partnership

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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has launched its first venture capital public-private partnership dedicated to developing technologies and medical products for public health emergencies with the nonprofit Global Health Investment Corporation (GHIC).

“While we tackle the pandemic’s impact, we’re exploring how the U.S. can better prepare for future public health emergencies, whether it’s the next pandemic or a bioterrorism incident,” HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra said. “The pandemic has demonstrated that the U.S. needs transformative technology that is not only available but also widely accessible. Today we are announcing an innovative, cost-effective approach that puts us on a better path to take on the next public health crisis and improve U.S. health care.”

The new HHS initiative will allow for investments through venture capital processes through the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority’s (BARDA’s) Ventures program. With an eye on preventing and halting pandemics and other health security threats, the partnership will see BARDA invest a minimum of more than $50 million into GHIC over the next five years. All told, it could invest up to $500 million over the next decade, though.

With this funding, GHIC will create a global health security fund and solicit matching capital from other investors. It will also invest in companies developing breakthrough technologies around the world. As these companies and technologies create returns on investment, BARDA’s funding will be returned for reinvestment and sustainment of the program and GHIC.

“Pathogens and health security threats constantly evolve and change. To effectively combat them, we need new and innovative ways to tap into the most novel and impactful ideas in the entrepreneurial community,” BARDA Director Gary Disbrow, Ph.D., said. “BARDA Ventures will rise to the challenge by engaging that community and leveraging both public and private funds to change the way we prepare for health security threats of the future.”