Horizon Health Network and Amgen Canada agree to work on establishing a new pathway that will see therapy made available to patients much faster than through conventional processes.

(BOSTON, Mass.) Tuesday, June 6, 2023 – Horizon Health Network (Horizon), in collaboration with Amgen Canada – one of the world’s leading biotechnology companies – is partnering to bring innovative medicine to patients faster.

We are embarking on a new innovative access pathway that will see clinically validated cancer treatment being made available to patients much more quickly than under conventional processes.

This innovative access pathway framework will work towards enabling cancer treatment to be made available to Horizon Health Network patients in New Brunswick and their clinical teams, providing patients an alternative treatment while easing the burden on health resources in a hospital setting.

“The traditional pathway for bringing innovative medical solutions to market in Canada is very linear and can often take two to three years from start to finish, which can have a very real and significant impact on patient outcomes,” said Margaret Melanson, Horizon Interim President and CEO. “This is providing an express lane for patients to have access to new treatments, ultimately providing better care and a better patient experience.”

With an average of 732 days, Canada currently ranks 19th out of 20 OECD countries in the average the number of days it takes for patients on public plans to access new medicines.

The innovative and early access solution being introduced at Horizon Health Network respects and is complementary to the existing process for introducing new medical solutions to market.

The agreement between Horizon Health Network and Amgen Canada will provide the Regional Health Authority with direct access to therapy, running parallel to the existing process, while dramatically reducing the amount of time the patient needs to wait for access to innovative treatment.

“With a mission to serve patients, Amgen seeks out new and innovative ways to ensure Canadians can access their medicines as quickly as possible,” said John Snowden, Executive Director of Amgen Canada. “We believe in addressing the needs of every patient every time and applaud the original thinking and speed of the healthcare thought leaders and decision makers at Horizon Health Network in New Brunswick who navigated a complex system to put patients first.”

The project will identify the first group of patients to be eligible for this expedited access to innovative drug therapy initiative in the first year, with potential to grow in the future.

We would like to recognize the critical role of our partners at ResearchNB for identifying exciting opportunities such as this and for serving as a connector between industry and health care organizations like Horizon Health Network to help drive innovative solutions forward.

Horizon Health Network promotes a culture where research and innovation can flourish. Horizon Research Services carries out approximately 250 clinical trials for various treatments and solutions annually, in addition to roughly 300 investigator-led studies.

Horizon Health Network and Amgen Canada will be closely monitoring the results of this innovative access agreement, with the potential to apply this pathway to other treatments and therapies in the future.

“New Brunswick has a thriving health research ecosystem and ResearchNB is pleased to have played a part in the development of this win-win collaboration,” said ResearchNB chief executive officer, Damon Goodwin. “Our province is a microcosm of Canada and research projects tested here can be scaled to the rest of Canada.”

About Horizon Health Network
Horizon Health Network is the largest regional health authority – and one of the largest employers – in New Brunswick, and the second-largest health authority in Atlantic Canada. Our leadership and health care providers are experts in diverse areas of health and community services and provide services to a half a million people. The organization has an annual budget of approximately $1.2 billion and has more than 13,000 employees, 1,100 physicians and 1,300 volunteers, as well as 17 foundations, 12 auxiliaries and 8 alumnae organizations.

About Amgen Canada
As a leader in innovation, Amgen Canada understands the value of science. With main operations located in Mississauga, Ontario's vibrant biomedical cluster, and its research facility in Burnaby, B.C., Amgen Canada has been an important contributor to advancements in science and innovation in Canada since 1991. The company contributes to the development of new therapies and new ways of using existing medicines in partnership with many of Canada's leading healthcare, academic, research, government and patient organizations. To learn more about Amgen Canada, visit www.amgen.ca and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/amgencanadagm.

About ResearchNB
Created through a merger of the New Brunswick Health Research Foundation and BioNB, ResearchNB is the province’s research and innovation enabler. With offices in Fredericton, Saint John and Moncton, it provides New Brunswick’s research sector with critical leadership and support including advocacy, initial funding, connections to potential partners, and the translation of science into economic opportunities. Projects developed in partnership with ResearchNB’s help New Brunswickers to thrive through improvements to patient care, an even stronger bioeconomy and increased economic growth.

For more information contact:

Kris McDavid
Horizon Media Relations

Natasha Bond
Amgen Corporate Affairs