It’s that time of year again, when most of us are back from vacation. Summer is winding down and this year, much went on in the sector over the summer, particularly related to the Québec Life Sciences Strategy and the issue of access to health data. I wanted to come back to Moderna’s decision to open a vaccine manufacturing facility in Canada. This is very good news for all of us and, of course, Montréal InVivo is doing everything possible to support the agencies that are responsible for convincing the company to choose Québec and Montréal as its final destination. The issue of the availability of manpower is a critical aspect in this type of decision. The upcoming arrival of several biomanufacturing companies (Novavax, for example) and the presence of several other companies from this industry segment in Québec lead us to swiftly undertake a mapping process in relation to human resource needs for biomanufacturing companies and to cross-reference this data with the current training capacities of the various teaching institutions. This work will make it possible to identify possible gaps and propose solutions to fill them as soon as possible in order to position Montréal and Québec as a destination of choice for life sciences manufacturing companies.

The issue of access to health data is another hot topic of discussion for the life sciences industry. The Ministère de la santé is expected to table a bill this fall to facilitate access to health data. The life sciences sector has been consulted by the expert committee set up in the Ministry. Will it be enough? Have we been heard? I have my doubts. It is a difficult subject, a bit taboo and not yet socially acceptable. I believe that we must now convince the population of the importance of this access for Québec society in order to develop innovative health solutions for the current and future needs of our population. We need to proactively explain how we plan to use these different types of data, for what purpose, what the benefit is for patients and what safeguards need to be put in place to ensure maximum security of this data. What must be done is collective communication work. How could you take part in this effort?