Research Australia supports TGA Reforms

The Therapeutic Goods Amendment (2016 Measures No. 1) Bill 2016 (the Bill) is part of the Government’s response to the recommendations of the review of Medicines and Medical Devices Regulation (MMDR), and the legislation is supported by Research Australia’s submission to the inquiry by the Senate Standing Committees on Community Affairs.

The aim of the Review’s recommendations is to improve the processes for the approval of medicines and medical devices by the Therapeutic Goods Administration. Together the regulatory reforms are expected to reduce the administrative burden on applicants and make the approval process faster without jeopardising the safety of consumers.

Achieving this aim will provide consumers with earlier access to potentially lifesaving new medicines and devices. It is also an effective means of supporting Australia’s medical device and medicines industries; by accelerating their pathway to market it will enable them to become profitable more quickly, providing them with more resources to pursue the international markets needed to be truly successful and profitable.

Research Australia submission TGA Bill

Social Impact Investing for better health

Research Australia’s submission to Treasury in response to the discussion paper on Social Impact Investing has advocated that interventions designed to improve health outcomes be explicitly acknowledged as within the scope of the proposed social investing framework.

Research Australia believes that Social Impact Investing could be an effective mechanism for funding and evaluating some pilot projects and clinical trials designed to implement and evaluate new evidence based practices and interventions. The benefits of implementing successful new interventions include better population health, improved patient care, and efficiency gains in the Australian healthcare system. These provide quantifiable social and financial gains that make the funding of these measures amenable to Social Impact Investing.

Research Australia Submission Social Impact Investing

Health and medical researchers welcome appointment of Hon Brad Hazzard MP to Health portfolio

30 January 2017

Australia’s peak body for health and medical research has welcomed the appointment of the
Hon Brad Hazzard MP as Minister for Health and Minister for Medical Research.

“Bringing health and medical research back under one senior minister presents new opportunities to better integrate health and medical research with clinical care. This will mean better outcomes for patients and opportunities to achieve sustainable spending within the NSW health budget,” Research Australia CEO Nadia Levin said. Continue reading “Health and medical researchers welcome appointment of Hon Brad Hazzard MP to Health portfolio”

Research Infrastructure Draft Roadmap

Research Australia has provided a response to the Chief Scientist’s Research Infrastructure Draft Roadmap, released in late 2016. Research Australia’s submission has addressed the proposal for a new national advisory group, suggesting the functions of this group could be preformed by existing bodies. It has also emphasised the importance of engagement with state and territory governments in relation to investment and reiterated the importance of workforce planning for a skilled workforce to build, maintain and use research infrastructure. Research Australia has called for greater transparency in the funding of major research infrastructure and suggested some further clarity about the circumstances in which the national interest can be invoked to justify new infrastructure spending.

Research Infrastructure Roadmap Submission

Fifth Mental Health Plan ignores research

Research Australia’s submission in response the draft Fifth National Mental Health Plan has highlighted the Plan’s failure to include health and medical research.

Research Australia is concerned that the Fifth Plan is currently a missed opportunity to make better use of Australia’s significant capacity in health and medical research to help deliver the Plan’s vision of healthier Australians, faster and more complete recoveries from mental illness and more responsive and effective services.

The draft Fifth Plan calls for significant reform and innovation in the way we deliver mental health services in Australia, and the health and medical research sector is well placed to help inform, design, implement and evaluate these reforms. Research Australia believes the Fifth Plan provides an opportunity to improve the integration of the mental health system with the health and medical research sector, and to better utilise and direct research towards the Plan’s priorities. Our submission has highlighted some of the many ways in which health and medical research can contribute. Submission for 5th Mental Health Plan

 

Roadmap for Research Infrastructure

Research Australia has responded to the Capability Issues Paper provided as part of the development of a new National Research Infrastructure Roadmap. The Roadmap will guide the Australian Government’s future investment in large national research infrastructure.

Research Australia’s submission supports the consideration of international participation in Australian facilities and Australian participation in international facilities as part of the process of evaluating new research infrastructure facilities. We have supported the proposed governance principles and suggested that specific governance arrangements need to be fit for purpose for the individual proposal rather than fitting a predetermined template.

Research Australia has emphasised the importance of broadening the governance frameworks in relation to data infrastructure to consider the issues raised where the data is individuals’ health information, and made the point that legislative and cultural barriers to the better use of data need to be addressed in tandem with technological solutions.

The need to consider workforce training and capability issues as part of the broader roadmap was endorsed, as was the need to consider the full infrastructure lifecycle.

Infrastructure Roadmap submission

Public Sector Data Availability and Use

The Productivity Commission is undertaking an Inquiry into the availability and use of public data. Research Australia’s submission in response to the Issues Paper emphasises the importance of improved access to public data as a means of facilitating Australian health and medical research. It highlights the importance of linked datasets and identifies a number of cultural and legislative barriers to the greater use of data for research purposes. It also provides some case studies and makes some recommendations for improvement.

Data Availability and Use

GSK Award for Research Excellence open for nominations

36th year of prestigious $80,000 research grant

Nominations for GSK’s Award for Research Excellence (ARE) are now open until 4 July. The longstanding award seeks to assist Australian research heroes by providing the winner with an $80,000 grant to support their research journey.

The GSK Award for Research Excellence is one of the most prestigious available to the Australian medical research community. It has been awarded since 1980 to recognise outstanding achievements in medical research and facilities career development with potential importance to human health and Australian research.

Continue reading “GSK Award for Research Excellence open for nominations”

Consultation on MRFF Strategy and Priorities

The initial phase of the MRFF Advisory Board’s consultation on the Strategy and Priorities closed on 6 June 2016.

 Research Australia drew on the extensive consultation process we undertook with our broad membership and alliance partners to respond to the consultation. We provided a submission in response to the Strategy and seven specific proposals in relation to Priorities for the MRFF. Lodged as eight separate submissions, they have been collated in a single document.

R A submissions to MRFF Consultations on Strategy and Priorities

 

New expert report to guide Medical Research Future Fund

Media Release: Monday 6 June, 2016

A new report from the health and medical sector says the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) needs to prioritise closing gaps between health research, health practice and the health economy.

Translating Research for a sustainable future comprehensively brings together the positions of 160 of Australia’s leading health and medical research organisations, companies and personnel.

The review, contributed to by prominent researchers, universities, and businesses in the field, outlines the sector’s view on priorities for the MRFF over the next two and five years.

Continue reading “New expert report to guide Medical Research Future Fund”