One of Australia’s leading medical research-intensive universities, University of New South Wales (UNSW) Sydney, today welcomed the latest funding announcement from the federal government’s Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) to boost the capacity and innovation of clinical trials and researchers.
UNSW Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Nicholas Fisk said the investment of $26 million into medical researchers, clinical trials and research grants, was an investment in the future health of Australia.
“We already know that when you invest in research in Australia you are creating the jobs and industries of the future. A Deloitte analysis commissioned by UNSW estimated that university research alone drives 10% of Australian GDP, an estimated $160 billion per annum,” Professor Fisk said.
The $18 million for clinical trial networks and grants will improve real health outcomes for patients.
“The announcement today of an $8 million boost to National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) fellowship schemes will assist our exceptional early to mid-career and clinical researchers to continue their important research work, helping UNSW – and Australia – stay at the forefront of medical discovery.
“And the $18 million for clinical trial networks and grants will improve real health outcomes for patients by creating more access to these important programs.”
Professor Fisk went on to say that the MRFF funding for clinical trials came just as UNSW Scientia Clinical Research, the first purpose built, early phase clinical trials centre in NSW, settled into its new home in the state of the art Bright Building, at Prince of Wales Hospital.
“This new facility gives patients the opportunity to take part in early phase clinical trials, with 30 inpatient beds, a laboratory and the only investigational product manufacturing in Australia. Researchers will also have access to advice on the design and conduct of clinical trials.”
Professor Peter Gunning, Head of UNSW School of Medical Sciences, said the University was driven to improve patient outcomes in the face of challenges like the ageing populations and the burden of chronic disease.
“Every day, UNSW researchers are working in our cutting-edge facilities, looking at these demanding health challenges and how we can translate discoveries into better care for people in Australia and all over the globe,” Professor Gunning said.
“Australia’s medical research standards are already world-class, this funding will help keep them that way.”