The Ritz Herald
The outside of the FDA headquarters is seen in White Oak, Maryland. © Al Drago

US Food and Drug Administration Extends its 40-Year Partnership With SAS

FDA inks $49.9 million deal with SAS

Published on January 11, 2021

SAS, the leader in advanced analytics, will extend a 40-year partnership with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to expand its capabilities in natural language processing, artificial intelligence, and machine learning capabilities through the SAS® Viya® platform in support of the FDA’s mission as an essential public health agency. Through a five-year, $49.9 million Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA), SAS will support bold digital transformation efforts underway in the FDA.

The initial projects will be with the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), which ensures that human drugs are safe and effective for their intended use. Through the SAS partnership, the FDA will:

  • Advance CDER’s initiative to modernize drug regulatory programs.
  • Provide analytically driven drug manufacturing facility surveillance.
  • Better fulfill the center’s mission through other key initiatives.

A longtime customer with a large and experienced SAS user community and many mission-critical SAS applications, the FDA will take advantage of the BPA to consolidate and expand its use of SAS utilizing the SAS Platform powered by SAS Viya, the company’s flagship cloud-based AI and machine learning platform. SAS will embed analytics experts within the FDA to help manage and identify modernization opportunities within CDER and other agency areas.

“We are in a new era of drug regulation,” said SAS CEO Jim Goodnight. “By unleashing the power of SAS’ most advanced technologies, we can work together to help the FDA find the perfect combination of speed, efficacy, and safety when it comes to getting lifesaving drugs to Americans.”

The BPA builds on decades of collaboration between the FDA, SAS, and the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). HHS uses SAS software extensively in several other agencies, including Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health, and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. SAS is used in numerous applications for disease surveillance, food, and drug safety, combatting the opioid crisis, Medicare fraud and abuse, and other enterprise performance management initiatives throughout HHS.

Associate Writer