The Covid-19 Evidence Accelerator fosters engagement, explores new topics, builds collaboration, and advances the use of real-world data to inform our nation’s pandemic response. The Evidence Accelerator will continue its evolution to address other public health and regulatory priorities.
Responding to the novel coronavirus pandemic inspired unprecedented collaboration and cooperation in the health and research communities. In March 2020, at the request of the FDA, the Reagan-Udall Foundation for the FDA, in collaboration with Friends of Cancer Research, created the COVID-19 Evidence Accelerator — a forum for stakeholders across the health care spectrum to share real-world data and to generate ideas on how to deal with COVID-19.
Initial efforts focused on understanding the natural history of COVID-19 and therapeutics, as little was known about the disease or potential medications that might be used to treat the virus effectively. The Evidence Accelerator lab meetings created a “safe collaborative space” to assimilate and evaluate data generated from across the country for organizations across the health data ecosystem: FDA, major health data/technology organizations, academia, professional societies, health systems, insurers, and drug and device industries. In May of 2020, the Diagnostics Accelerator, supported in part by a grant from The Rockefeller Foundation, began reviewing real-world data including test performance, surveillance trends, contemporaneous symptoms and presentation.
Today, the Evidence Accelerator has progressed to address new challenges created by the pandemic. As Covid-19 vaccines became rolled out, we launched a vaccines workstream, and we continue to explore how the Evidence Accelerator framework for knowledge sharing and advancing opportunities in real-world evidence may help address other critical health needs.