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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

News Release

May 29, 2019
HHS Press Office: (202) 690-6343
Twitter: @HHSMedia

HHS Seeks to Expand its Network Innovation Accelerators into More States

Accelerators will speed development of innovative medical products to combat national security threats

Funding is available from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for organizations to provide specific biotechnology innovators with the technical and entrepreneurial support needed to accelerate development of their products.

The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, part of the HHS’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, established a network of eight accelerators in 2018 through an initiative called DRIVe, the BARDA Division of Research, Innovation, and Ventures. BARDA DRIVe now seeks to expand that network into other parts of the country.

“Innovation comes all across the country and our accelerator network is there to scout and foster promising solutions to improve our national health security, providing business expertise and laboratory space for startups and small businesses,” said BARDA Director Rick Bright, Ph.D. “Our accelerators move our reach outside of normal government channels and away from the government norms; they are part of a revolution in the way we do business, making working with us easier and faster than ever.”

The existing accelerator network improves BARDA’s outreach to non-traditional partners, attracting entrepreneurs, innovators, and researchers and providing insight into working with BARDA DRIVe. The network actively identifies promising candidate technologies and introduces them to DRIVe solicitations for potential funding consideration. Currently accelerators are focused on finding candidates for DRIVe’s three areas of interest.

These areas are: (1) Early Notification to Act, Control, and Treat (ENACT), which funds technology and platforms that provide early, actionable information to detect illnesses before people even know they are sick; (2) Solving Sepsis, which focuses on reducing the incidence, morbidity, mortality and cost of sepsis; and (3) other disruptive technologies, which seeks radically innovative technologies that can transform health security.

Accelerators in BARDA’s DRIVe network provide expertise in business strategies, regulatory guidance, commercialization practices, and investment opportunities to

DRIVe-funded developers through mentoring programs and networking opportunities, allowing them to focus on their technology development as they reach their full commercial potential. Accelerators will:


  • identify, promote and foster innovations in early and mid-stage health security product and technology development;
  • support BARDA DRIVe health security products and technologies as they navigate research, development, and regulatory pathways;
  • provide wrap-around services to assist the research and development efforts (such as technical, legal and business advice, access to facilities and incubator spaces, integration services); and
  • cultivate the community of those making a difference in health security products, technologies and innovations.

Current DRIVe accelerators are located in key regional hubs across the United States where health security products and technologies in biotechnology, life science research, and medical innovations are heavily concentrated. The eight current accelerators are:

  • The Center for Biotechnology at Stonybrook in Long Island, New York;
  • First Flight Venture Center in Raleigh, North Carolina;
  • Life Science Washington Institute in Seattle;
  • MedTech Innovator in Los Angeles;
  • Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center at UMass in Lowell, Massachusetts;
  • New Orleans BioInnovation Center in New Orleans;
  • Texas Medical Center Innovation Institute in Houston; and
  • University City Science Center in Philadelphia.  

Applications for funding to become an accelerator are due by 11:59 p.m. EDT July 23, 2019. For details on the eligibility criteria and application process, visit Funding Opportunity Number: 316344. Applications must be submitted electronically through


HHS works to enhance and protect the health and well-being of all Americans, providing for effective health and human services and fostering advances in medicine, public health, and social services. The mission of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) is to save lives and protect Americans from 21st century health security threats. Within ASPR, BARDA invests in the advanced research and development, acquisition, and manufacturing of medical countermeasures – vaccines, drugs, therapeutics, diagnostic tools, and non-pharmaceutical products needed to combat health security threats and transform health security. DRIVe strives to saves lives by investing in transformational technologies to protect Americans from 21st century health security threats. For more, visit and To learn more about partnering with BARDA, visit


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  • This page last reviewed: May 29, 2019