Canada is home to some of the best researchers and scientists in the world, and has a vibrant life sciences sector. However, there remain great opportunities to accelerate innovation and move our nation from the middle of the pack to the top in international competitiveness in life sciences.
As a leading healthcare company, Roche Canada has made significant investments and contributions to the life sciences sector in the past year:
- We established a Global Pharma Technical Operations site at our Canadian pharmaceutical headquarters in Mississauga, bringing up to 500 highly skilled and specialized full-time positions to Ontario by the end of 2023.
- We launched AI with Roche (aiR), the first collaborative to combine the expertise of all three national AI institutes – Amii in Alberta, Mila in Quebec and the Vector Institute in Ontario – to facilitate collaborations and accelerate leading-edge AI research, development, application and access of AI solutions in healthcare. The field of AI in life sciences represents an emerging strength that will continue bolstering economic growth and advance digital transformation to improve Canadians’ health.
- We announced a new Software Development Hub that will be housed at the Roche Diagnostics Canadian head office in Laval, Quebec. This team will focus on genomic data and the development of algorithms, data analysis tools and system infrastructures that will allow researchers and clinicians to make safe and effective decisions.
- We ran the Roche Canada COVID-19 Innovation Challenge, a funding program to support our community in bringing forward innovative ideas to address some of the biggest challenges and issues of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Roche also continues to work with stakeholders across the sector to advance innovation and strengthen life sciences in the country, for example as a member of the Resilient Healthcare Coalition (RHC), a collaborative of health system partners that sees a robust life sciences sector as fundamental to Canadian wellness and prosperity.
Moving forward, building a thriving life sciences sector requires a comprehensive and integrated strategy where public-private stakeholders come together to strengthen Canada’s health and economic well-being. Roche supports the ambitious objectives of the Government of Canada’s Health and Biosciences Economic Strategy Table report released in 2019. We encourage the government, with input from industry, patients and other stakeholders, to revitalize the report to identify specific and measurable next steps that will bring the recommendations to fruition.