About Neurocenter Finland
The Finnish government has funded the establishment of Neurocenter Finland as part of implementing its growth strategy for health research and innovation. The preparatory phase and the cooperation network are coordinated by the University of Eastern Finland, which is planning Neurocenter Finland’s activities through a preparatory working group.
The Personalized Medicine Project
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health aims to capitalize on the use of genomic data to enhance the capabilities of personalized medicine in healthcare. The Personalized Medicine project is the government’s flagship project to strengthen competitiveness in healthcare. Accordingly, in the budget plan, the government decided to establish a Genome Center and a Comprehensive Cancer Center in Finland and to improve the efficiency of public biobanks. Funds totalling EUR 17 million are allocated towards the set-up costs for this infrastructure in 2017-2020.
In September 2017, the government decided to fund the establishment of Neurocenter Finland as part of the implementation of the government’s growth strategy for health. The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and the Ministry of Education and Culture together support the 1.5-year pilot project for EUR 1.8 million. The Ministry of Employment and the Economy also provides funding for the project.
The establishment of the Genome Center, Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Neurocenter Finland as centers of expertise and the unification of biobanks will rejuvenate the operating models for healthcare services, strengthen the role of the healthcare system in research, and improve industrial cooperation.
Fulfilling the goals of the Personalized Medicine Project require multi-pronged actions in legislation, information systems, data repositories, and healthcare services.
Research in neurosciences has a solid foundation in Finland. Finnish researchers and research groups as well as health care personnel are renowned for their reliable and high-caliber work.
Neurocenter Finland is a one-stop shop for research in neurosciences and product development. It facilitates innovations and development of new personalized healthcare.
A key objective is to create a structure of collaboration and platform for researchers and other stakeholders. Furthermore, it makes relevant information in neurosciences conveniently available.
Finland: Excellence in Neuroscience
Neuroscience research in Finland is highly advanced and on par with international standards. However, the opportunities it offers are partially untapped. This is due to, among other things, the fragmentation of the research field. In order for Finland to maintain its position at the forefront of neuroscience development, Finland’s fragmented expertise in neuroscience must be utilized centrally and efficiently.
The establishment of Neurocenter Finland aims to accelerate national and international research collaboration in the field of neuroscience, to connect research with practical patient care as well as with social and health innovations, and to promote new, brain health-related growth companies.
Neurocenter Finland aims to maintain comprehensive and up-to-date information online on research projects, infrastructure, methods, materials and innovations from Finland. Its activities are expected to contribute to research in the field and strengthen Finland’s competitiveness.
Neurocenter Finland will act as a one-stop shop between Finnish research and external, mainly commercial actors, and would promote the development and commercialization of Finnish research; in turn, this is anticipated to drive the growth of Finnish neuroscience-related businesses and investment in this field throughout Finland. In the long term, progress in the treatment and prevention of diseases would be a true demonstration of the impact and effectiveness of this national project.
Information as an asset
Citizens’ confidence in healthcare and research is key. Information resources can only be created if citizens donate their samples and data for use in research, participate in research as patients, and trust the system as a whole.