Speaker Series Launched

Research Australia is proud to announce the launch of our inaugural Speaker Series events, with the first event to take place on May 17 at the Parliament of NSW.

Research Australia’s Speaker Series events will be free for our members to attend, and will bring together sector leaders in panel-style discussions over breakfast or lunch at venues across major cities around Australia as they discuss the most critical issues facing the Australian health and medical sector and its consumers today. The events create new opportunities to talk about the bold ideas that will drive change in Australian health care and health technology, and enable the whole of the research pipeline to participate and create a deeper understanding of the role each part of that sector plays in the pipeline.

Speaker Series Launch Event

The 2018 Speaker Series Launch Event will take place at the Parliament of NSW, where our panel will discuss the topic of “Is New South Wales ready to harness the transformative power of data in health and medical research?”

Presented by Vodafone Foundation in support of the Garvan Institute of Medical Research, join us at our inaugural Speaker Series event where our panel of expert industry leaders will explore this topic. Our panel includes:

  • Dr Jean-Frédéric Levesque – Chief Executive Officer, NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation
  • Professor Emily Banks – Scientific Director, 45 and Up Study, Sax Institute
  • Dr Avi Ratnanesan – Founder and CEO, Energesse
  • Harry Iles-Mann – Patient/Consumer Advocate – Consumer Reference Lead, Australian Digital Health Agency

With introductions from:

  • Nadia Levin – CEO and Managing Director, Research Australia
  • Dan Lloyd – Chief Strategy Officer and Corporate Affairs Director, Chairman, Vodafone Foundation

Date:     Thursday 17 May 2018
Time:     7:45am-9:00am
Venue:  Strangers’ Function Room, Parliament of NSW, 6 Macquarie Street, Sydney

A light breakfast will be served at the event, and registrations for the event are free of charge for employees of Research Australia members.

Please click here for more information or to register your attendance today.

Commentary on the Treasurer’s speech to the AFR’s Banking and Wealth Summit

The health and medical research sector welcomes the recent announcement by the Treasurer that the Government will respond to the R&D Tax Incentive Review in the upcoming Budget and end the lingering uncertainty that surrounds the future of this important scheme.

The Treasurer wants the R&D Tax incentive to direct funds to truly research-intensive industries. In particular, to those companies that won’t immediately benefit from a lower company tax rate.

The Treasurer need look no further than the health and medical research sector. These are the kinds of entities who rely on the R&D Tax incentive to develop high-cost, long lead time technologies like medicines and vaccines, with clinical trials.

Relative to many other sectors, the commercialisation of health and medical research has longer timeframes, due to significant scientific and regulatory hurdles to reach market (patients), and there is higher expenditure on R&D, particularly in later stages with activities like clinical trials.

The health and medical research sector is asking to be exempt from any caps on the refundable component of the R&D Tax incentive.

If a $4 million cap for the refundable component is implemented in the upcoming Federal Budget, then at the very least, health innovators should be carved out to ensure they can still run clinical trials in Australia. Clinical trials provide early access for Australian patients to promising new treatments – often in areas where effective treatments don’t exist. Clinical trials also drive significant economic activity, support STEMM jobs and attract foreign investment.

The health and medical research sector is willing to support changes to the R&D Tax incentive which ensure that it is delivering real benefit to Australia because we want the scheme to have long-term sustainability. The right policy settings will optimise the ability of Australian health and medical researchers to contribute to a healthy population and a healthy economy.

 

Hunt, King and Di Natale to address Research Australia’s Pre-election Summit

Next week Research Australia will be using our unique convening power to bring together key representative organisations from across the health and medical research pipeline to identify the key issues that unite us as we approach the next federal election.

Our inaugural Pre-Election Summit will be held at Old Parliament house in Canberra, where we will work with the representatives to capture the issues our sector wants commitment to – from a future Australian Government of any political persuasion. The Summit is another example of our efforts to advocating for sector-wide positions on government policies on behalf of and in conjunction with our members.

The organisations represented at the workshop include:

  • ARCS Australia
  • Association of Australian Medical Research Institutes
  • AusBiotech
  • Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences
  • Australian Clinical Trials Alliance
  • Australian Health Economics Society
  • Australian Venture Capitalists Association Ltd
  • Consumers Health Forum of Australia
  • Australian Society for Medical Research
  • Medicines Australia
  • Medical Technology Association of Australia
  • Rare Voices Australia

On the day, there will also be presentations and messages from:

  • Hon Greg Hunt MP, Federal Minister for Health
  • Hon Catherine King MP, Shadow Minister for Health
  • Senator Hon Dr Richard Di Natale, Leader of the Australian Greens
  • Professor Frank Gannon, Director and CEO, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute
  • Terry Barnes, Social Policy Consultant, Cormorant Policy Advice
  • Professor Garry Jennings AO, Executive Director, Sydney Health Partners

We would like to thank all members who responded to our recent communication asking for input to the priorities and discussion agenda for the day. You have helped shaped the issues to be discussed on the day, which will include:

  • A bipartisan commitment to the Medical Research Future Fund reaching $20bn in funds under management by 2021.
  • Sustainable, predictable research and development tax-incentives.
  • A renewed commitment to strengthening Australia’s international attractiveness as a destination for clinical trials
  • A bipartisan commitment to the national roll-out of My Health Record and the secondary use of deidentified My Health Record data for research purposes.

Please follow Research Australia’s Twitter account @ResAustralia on the day for live updates from the Pre-election Summit.

MRFF funding for translational indigenous health research

Marking National Close the Gap Day on 15 March, the Minister for Health Greg Hunt announced MRFF funding of $6 million over three years to the Central Australian Academic Health Science Centre (CAAHSC). The CAAHSC was recognised in July last year by the NHMRC as a Centre for Innovation in Regional Health, and has an emphasis on Indigenous-led and community controlled research. This funding is provided as part of the Rapid Applied Research Translation Program, designed to support the translational research efforts of the the seven Advanced Health Research Translation Centres and the two Centres for Innovation in Regional Health. It follows the announcement last year of MRFF funding of $10 million under this Program to the Academic Health Research and Translation Centres.

Please visit the MRFF Funding Announcements page for more information about all MRFF funding announcements.

Research Australia and BUPA Foundation to host Research Translation Breakfast and Workshop

Research Translation has become an integral part of health and medical research as pressures increase to demonstrate the impact research will have on health outcomes. However, there is often confusion around what this means, why it is important, and how it can be incorporated when designing and communicating research.

To help us better understand some of the complexities of this topic, Research Australia is working with our Foundation member, BUPA Foundation, on a Research Translation Breakfast and workshop event. Research Australia will be represented by our CEO, Nadia Levin, who will be presenting on the day and a number of our members who will be in attendance. We encourage you to follow the activity on the day through our Twitter account at @ResAustralia.

The breakfast will include the awarding of the Bupa Health Foundation Emerging Health Researcher Award, and we would like to wish the finalists all the best of luck. We are pleased to note that all finalists for this year’s awards come from Research Australia member organisations:

  • Dr Amanda McCullough, Centre for Research in Evidence-Based Practice, Bond University
  • Dr Bridianne O’Dea, Black Dog Institute
  • Dr Emma Beckett, The University of Newcastle, School of Medicine and Public Health
  • Dr Jaquelyne Hughes, Menzies School of Health Research and Royal Darwin Hospital
  • Dr Rae-Anne Hardie, Australian Institute of Health Innovation, Macquarie University
  • Dr Thushara Perera, Bionics Institute

Research Australia is pleased to be working with one of our Foundation Members on such a significant event, stay tuned to the Research Australia website for a recap on the day’s activities.

Research Australia to host Pre-Election Summit

Later this month Research Australia will be using our unique convening power to bring together key representative organisations from across the health and medical research pipeline to identify the key issues that unite us as we approach the next federal election.

Our inaugural Pre-Election Summit will be held at Old Parliament house in Canberra, on 27 March. As the national convenor of the health and medical research sector, Research Australia will capture the issues our sector wants commitment to – from a future Australian Government of any political persuasion.

Some of the issues to be discussed on the day will include:

  • A bipartisan commitment to the Medical Research Future Fund reaching $20b in funds under management by 2021.
  • Sustainable, predictable research and development tax-incentives.
  • A renewed commitment to strengthening Australia’s international attractiveness as a destination for clinical trials
  • A bipartisan commitment to the national roll-out of My Health Record and the secondary use of deidentified My Health Record data for research purposes.

Research Australia will be sharing the outcomes of the event in the news section of this website after the conclusion of the event.

Low Survival Cancers and Diseases (LSCD) Grant Opportunity

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) has announced a new funding opportunity through the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) with a Low Survival Cancers and Diseases (LSCD) Grant Opportunity.

The competitive grant opportunity will provide support for clinical trials that address low survival cancers and diseases. Applications to this grant opportunity must propose a single clinical trial that aims to improve survival rates for Australians with a low survival cancer or other disease.

Applications for the grant open today, please visit the NHMRC website for more information on the opportunity including key dates, grant guidelines and details on how to apply.

Major MRFF Announcements

There has been some big news coming out of Canberra in the last few days, with two major announcements regarding the Medical Research Future Fund.

“Million Minds” health mission to focus on mental health

Earlier today, the Minister for Health announced a National ‘million minds’ Health Mission, focusing on mental health, to be funded from the MRFF. The plan for the Mission is to be developed ‘over the next six months’, including details of what the MRFF will fund. This follows on the Brain Cancer mission announced last year.

$2.5 million announced for National Action Plan for endometriosis

The Federal Government has announced that $2.5 million will be available for a targeted call for research into the diagnosis and treatment of endometriosis. The funding was announced by the Health Minister on 2 March 2018 as part of the Government’s development of a National Action Plan for Endometriosis.

Please visit the MRFF Funding Announcements page for more information about these and other MRFF funding announcements.

Submission to the Review of the ACNC legislation

Research Australia has made our submission to the Review of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission legislation.

The changes proposed by the Commissioner include extending his power to determine what is effective use of charities’ resources.

Research Australia believes the legislation is working well and there is no reason to amend the Act.

Please click here to read our submission in full.

 

Save The Date! 2018 Health & Medical Research Awards

Research Australia is pleased to announce that the 2018 Health and Medical Research Awards will be held in Sydney on Thursday 8 November.

Research Australia invites you to join us for the 16th installment of our annual Health & Medical Research Awards to celebrate the best of Australian health and medical research. Our Awards bring together the Who’s Who of the health and medical research pipeline, including researchers, government, health corporates, pharmaceutical companies and consumer interest groups to honour our Award recipients.

It will be a night to hear from our sector leaders, catch up with colleagues and old friends, exchange stories and reflect on the year’s achievements. Keep an eye out on the Research Australia website in coming weeks for more information about each Award and how to nominate.

For now, please Save The Date in your diary so you don’t miss this night of nights.

When: Thursday 8 November, from 6.30pm
Where: Sofitel Darling Harbour – Sydney, NSW
Dress: Black Tie

Please keep an eye on the Awards page for information on nominations, which will be opening shortly.

For more information about any aspect of this year’s Awards, contact the Research Australia team via email admin@researchaustralia.org or phone 02 9295 8546.

We look forward to seeing you there.