On April 23, 2010 the Flemish Government approved a one-time investment of 8 million euro grant to the Center for Medical Innovation (CMI), following the proposal of Minister of Innovation Ingrid Lieten. Previously, on 18 December 2009, the Flemish Government adopted the structural funding agreement with the CMI.
Direct outcome of the VRWB-advisory report 120
The CMI is a direct outcome of the VRWB advisory report 120 "The development of translational research in Flanders" and a concrete result of the VRWB Cluster and Spearhead policy. On 25 January 2010, during an academic session in the Flemish parliament, the "Innovation Medical Center" "was inaugurated.
Centre for Medical Innovation
The CMI is a collaboration between the Flemish universities, university hospitals, pharmaceutical and biotech industries and the Flemish Government. The goal of the Center for Medical Innovation is to encourage all partners to jointly develop translational research, based on high quality biobanks.
Initially, the CMI will need to set up the Flemish Biobank and its IT infrastructure. This biobank will link the five biobanks that are associated to the four university hospitals and the University of Hasselt. In addition, four Clinical Research Centres (CRC) will be set up within the for university hospitals (UZ Ghent, UZ Leuven, UZ Brussels and UZ Antwerp).
The cost of the first phase (until the end of 2011) was estimated at 9.5 million euros. The Flemish Government approved on 23 April 2010 a grant of 8 million euros from the Financing Fund for debt reduction and one-off investment (FFEU). The decision furthermore specifies the disbursement of these funds and the necessary milestones. The funds should be used for the development of an ICT infrastructure, for other Biobank infrastructure, and for initial infrastructure investments of the CRCs. The remaining 1.5 million euros for were already provided in the budget of the IWT, the government agency for Innovation by Science and Technology.