Government Must Do More to Support Researchers

Posted: 05-15-2020

May 15, 2020

Statement from Health Charities Coalition of Canada in response to the Government of Canada’s support for some researchers

“There is more help needed to help our health charities continue to provide critical services for vulnerable patients throughout this pandemic, and as we emerge from it. The Health Charities Coalition of Canada membership collectively invests $155 million annually into health research in Canada, supporting over 1300 primary investigators and over 2500 trainees and co-investigators each year. Health charities play an important and complementary role to other funders, partnering with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, filling essential funding gaps and offering stable funding, and promoting patient-centred research and direct connections to patient communities. Due to COVID-19, health charities have experienced by a 50% drop in revenue as a result of fundraising efforts on hold due to the pandemic and the accompanying economic downturn. In response, health charities have taken significant steps to manage the financial crisis, including decreases in executive and staff salaries, furlough days, and staff layoffs.

While today’s announcement to support some researchers is welcome, it does not support the researchers and projects that our Health Charities members support, and that work is at risk. The health charities are asking for direct investments of up to $28 million per month which would allow organizations to focus efforts on patient support, fundraising efforts and protecting gains in research. Our intent is to get back on our feet so we do not need government support, but without that support, we will be unable to continue important work to support Canadian patients.”

Connie Cote

CEO, Health Charities Coalition of Canada


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