The need to develop Canadian solutions to COVID-19 trials and tribulations has been top-of-mind across all levels of government throughout the pandemic. Combatting healthcare difficulties and preventing spread has been priority since early 2020, when the novel coronavirus began making waves in Canada. To respond, the Department of National Defence (DND) successfully pivoted a government procurement program to fund solutions to these challenges and recently announced the latest projects supported.
“Canadian innovators are among the most creative and innovative people in the world. We are all on the same mission to conquer COVID-19 and to keep the members of the Canadian Armed Forces, and all Canadians, safe. I look forward to the outcomes of our investment announced today – they will remain important even after this pandemic ends.”
-Harjit Singh Sajjan, Minister of National Defence
The Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security (IDEaS) program has been one of the key funding approaches for Canadian solutions combatting COVID-19.
What Is the Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security (IDEaS) Program?
Designed to foster military and defence technology strategies, the Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security (IDEaS) program seeks to resolve challenges facing military and front-line workers. Through IDEaS, the DND has issued 48 contribution agreements for COVID-19 support, culminating in approximately $8.64 million of funding distributed. Moreover, the DND has categorized this funding into four streams:
- Rapid Response: Real-time Insights for Pandemic Decision Making
- Scrubbing your Scrubs: Finding Ways to Re-use COVID-19 Protective Gear
- Super Sanitize: Cleaning Sensitive Equipment and Workspaces
- Moral Trauma on the Frontline – See, Prevent, Treat
Furthermore, those selected for each stream may vary as successful applicants range from large industry companies to academia. In this allotment of funding, projects were approved for what is called “Phase 1” which permits a maximum of $200,000 for each award. If you are interested in learning more about this DND initiative, we encourage you to read more about IDEaS.
Which Canadian Solutions Are Receiving Funding?
For reference, these listed contribution agreements offer a glimpse into a couple successful recipients from each funding category:
- Rapid Response (18 accepted proposals):
- Thales Digital Solutions has received $198,690 for their project titled: Telemonitoring Remote OUTbreak (TROUT).
- MDA Systems Ltd has received $200,000 for their project titled: Pandemic Outlook in Remote Areas.
- Scrubbing your Scrubs (nine accepted proposals):
- University of New Brunswick has received $199,999 for their project titled: Reusable Masks with Self-Disinfecting Filter.
- Spectronix Inc. has received $197,800 for their project titled: A Low-Cost, Versatile, Mobile Disinfection Multi-Purpose System.
- Super Sanitize (13 accepted proposals):
- Ground Effects Environmental Services has received $200,000 for their project titled: The Utilization of the Sanozone Technology for Pathogen Deactivation and Sanitization.
- Ryerson University has received $146,050 for their project titled: Multi-Robot Germicidal System.
- Moral Trauma on the Frontline (eight accepted proposals):
- University of Manitoba has received $104,701 for their project titled: Moral Injury in Long-Term Care Staff During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Assessment & Intervention Development Using an Innovative Multi-Method Approach.
- University Health Network (UHN) has received $199,525 for their project titled: Addressing Moral Injury and Extreme Stress Responses on the Frontline—Further Development of a Transdiagnostic Internet-Delivered Intervention for Mental Health Symptoms Related to COVID-19: RESTORE.
To learn more about all 48 successful contribution agreements, please refer to the Government of Canada programs page.
What Is a Contribution Agreement?
A contribution agreement is a funding vehicle that allows Canadians to incept new solutions to national issues, such as the COVID-19 virus. The goal is to give Canadian organizations non-repayable capital to produce either a good or service without being acquired by government departments. Due to the complex nature of some government funding initiatives, we encourage readers to learn more about contribution agreements.
Government Funding & COVID-19 Support
To read more about COVID-19 financial support from the Canadian government, reach out to a Mentor Works representative today. For more information on current funding programs, visit our government funding directory.