Our Future Health is an ambitious collaboration between the public sector, charities and companies. We work closely with the NHS and with public authorities across all nations and regions of the UK.
Partnerships contribute to our mission of helping people live healthier lives for longer through better prevention, earlier detection and improved treatment of diseases. We work with our partners to maximise the value of Our Future Health for research in the public interest.
Medical research is done by researchers in companies, charities and universities. We aim to make Our Future Health resources available to as many researchers as possible to help to speed the discovery and development of medicines, tests and equipment used to help prevent, detect diagnose and treat diseases.
All proposals to access Our Future Health information and resources will be reviewed to ensure that they are ethically sound, for public good and aligned with Our Future Health objectives. All researchers, whether employed by universities, government, the NHS, charities or companies, will be held to the same standards.
Charities and industry
Our partnerships with charities and industry are an important part of making Our Future Health a success, including providing part of the funding needed to set up and deliver the programme.
Charities and life sciences companies have expertise in discovering, developing and producing new tests and methods for improving the prevention, early detection and treatment of disease. By joining forces with leading charities and companies across a range of disease areas to establish Our Future Health, we will also be able to reach a wider range of research expertise to help shape the scientific and technological goals and requirements of our programme.
Building on the power of charities’ existing strong relationships with the public will also help us to engage people in the development of our programme and build the understanding, confidence and trust needed to meet our ambition of reaching five million volunteers.
For additional information on how our charity and industry partners are involved in the Our Future Health programme you can read details about our governance.
Our Future Health has joined with 16 health research charities that are endorsing the pilot phase of the programme and providing valuable support and experience.
These charities have brought their expertise in discovering and developing new methods of early detection and treatment of diseases and health conditions and are helping to develop the programme.
- Action Against Age-Related Macular Degeneration
- Alzheimer’s Research UK
- Alzheimer’s Society
- Asthma + Lung UK
- Blood Cancer UK
- Breast Cancer Now
- British Heart Foundation
- Cancer Research UK
- Diabetes UK
- MS Society
- Pancreatic Cancer UK
- Parkinson’s UK
- Prostate Cancer UK
- Stroke Association
- Versus Arthritis
As well as contributing funding, our industry partners bring considerable expertise in discovering and developing new methods of prevention, early detection and treatment of diseases and health conditions. By making Our Future Health resources available to researchers both from academia and industry, we aim to help accelerate the discovery and development of innovative diagnostics and treatments.
Our Future Health has announced £140 million funding from leading life sciences companies that are investing in and providing their expertise to support the design and successful delivery of Our Future Health. They are our Founding Industry Members:
- Boehringer Ingelheim
- Exact Sciences
- GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)
- Janssen Research & Development, LLC facilitated by Johnson & Johnson Innovation
- Novo Nordisk
- Randox Laboratories
- Regeneron Genetics Center
- Thermo Fisher Scientific
We have agreed some specific terms with industry partners that recognise their investment in and support to develop Our Future Health from its early stages:
- During the early years of the programme, our industry partners will be the only large commercial organisations that are eligible to apply to use Our Future Health resources for research. This doesn’t affect access to Our Future Health for other researchers, such as those in smaller companies (SMEs) or non-commercial organisations like universities. Industry partners will apply to our Access Board for approval to conduct research in the same way as other researchers. All researchers, whether they are employed by universities, government, the NHS, charities or companies, will be held to the same standards.
- Industry partners, as well as other researchers that use Our Future Health, will be given time to analyse and interpret the findings of their research and assess their significance. The majority of researchers will then return a copy of their results to us. This means that Our Future Health will constantly grow in breadth and depth, which will benefit other researchers in future.
- Researchers may profit from discoveries they make using Our Future Health resources. Our industry partners have agreed to make reasonable efforts to ensure that innovations developed using our resources are made available in the UK to benefit NHS patients.
- Industry partners will be represented on our Founders Board – one of the boards we are setting up to help guide and shape Our Future Health. The Founders Board will provide guidance on the scientific and technical aspects of Our Future Health; help us to identify emerging challenges and opportunities; and help to make the programme valuable to as wide a range of researchers as possible. The Founders Board will be able to nominate experts to sit on some other advisory boards established by Our Future Health to ensure that we can benefit from their expertise across the full breadth of the programme.
NHS and healthcare
The unprecedented scale of Our Future Health means we are working closely in partnership with UK healthcare authorities and the NHS. They are providing significant input and support to our plans to invite people across the UK to join the programme. Healthcare professionals also have a strong influence over the design and operation of the programme through our governance.
We are working in partnership with NHS Blood and Transplant to give blood donors the opportunity to join Our Future Health. In 2021 volunteers at NHS blood donor centres completed an online health questionnaire, gave their informed consent to link information from their healthcare records to Our Future Health and donated a blood sample.
To find out more about opportunities to partner with Our Future Health, please email us at [email protected]