Newswise — The PhRMA Foundation has released its 2020 annual report, highlighting a year of activity that included $3.7 million in funding distributions across 15 programs and awards. The report includes summaries of the ongoing work of the Foundation’s grant recipients, awardees, and supported research institutions.

“As the Foundation enters its 57th year of operation, we remain committed to funding research projects that bring viable solutions to some of the most perplexing questions in health care,” said PhRMA Foundation Chairman Alfred W. Sandrock, MD, PhD. “The dozens of grant recipients and awardees featured in this report are a testament to the possibility that – with the right kind of investment – affordable, effective, and equitable health care is within our reach. With each passing year, we move another step closer to attaining that goal.”

The report includes highlights of the Foundation’s health equity programming, which was a strong focus of its efforts in 2020. Over the course of the year, the Foundation launched a new Challenge Award under the Value Assessment Initiative, soliciting proposals for how value assessment can better serve diverse populations and address the drivers of health disparities; created a new Fellowship for Underrepresented Populations in Biomedical Sciences that aims to make the biomedical and pharmaceutical sciences more representative of the country and communities it aims to serve; and announced a new program that seeks to leverage health care technology and data to increase diversity in clinical trials.

“The events of 2020 – from the COVID-19 pandemic to a nationwide awareness of health inequities that have raised great concern within the American health care system – demonstrate that change must come to the fields of pharmaceutical interventions, health outcomes, and value assessment research,” said outgoing PhRMA Foundation President Eileen Cannon. “The PhRMA Foundation is working to be at the forefront of that change through our dedication of new resources that will serve to make our nation’s health care system more equitable and inclusive.” Ms. Cannon is retiring as Foundation President after 22 years of service, to be replaced this month by Amy M. Miller, PhD.

The work of the researchers who received the Foundation’s Value Assessment Initiative’s 2020 Challenge and Research Awards are also highlighted in the report. Now in its fifth year, the Initiative continues to produce results that are broadening the current discourse surrounding value assessment research through the support of institutions and researchers who are exploring new ways to conceptualize, define and measure health care value. The winning papers of the 2020 Challenge Awards will be featured in an upcoming special supplement of the peer-reviewed journal Value and Outcomes Spotlight.

The report lists the final recipients of the  the Foundation’s annual awards in Pharmacology/Toxicology, Pharmaceutics, and Informatics. Their innovative research efforts are inspiring and worth investing in. To better align the Foundation’s funding priorities with its updated mission – which focuses on multidisciplinary projects that span the complex spectrum of drug development – funding going forward will now be distributed in four categories: Drug Discovery, Drug Delivery, Translational Medicine and Health Outcomes Research. The recipients of funding in these new categories will continue to be announced throughout 2021 and highlighted in next year’s annual report.

An electronic copy of the Foundation’s 2020 annual report is available here.

About the PhRMA Foundation

The mission of the PhRMA Foundation is to improve public heath by proactively investing in innovative research, education, and value-driven health care. For 56 years, the Foundation has been helping advance scientific research and innovation to benefit patients. Since its founding in 1965, it has distributed more than $100 million to support these efforts. The PhRMA Foundation accomplishes its mission by investing in three key areas: core programming, value assessment initiative and a new program under development in the use and application of Technology and Data in Health Care. The PhRMA Foundation’s core programs of Drug Delivery, Drug Discovery, Health Outcomes Research and Translational Medicine encourage young scientists to pursue research as their career choice and assists in training the next generation of innovators. The PhRMA Foundation's emphasis on evidence-based research that determines the true value of medicines is supported by its Value Assessment Initiative. To learn more, please visit

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