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Medical Research Grant Success Slides to 14.9%

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The announcement of a further fall in the already record low success rate of National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grant approvals demonstrates the urgent need for the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) announced in the Federal Budget last May, according to an action group formed by medical researchers.

NHMRC Project Grants are the primary funding scheme for health and medical research, but the 14.9% success rate of applicants this year has continued a slide from 16.9% last year and 22.8% 5 years ago.

MRFF Action Group Chairman Mr Peter Scott, who is also Chairman of the Baker IDI Heart & Diabetes Institute and Vice Chairman of UBS Investment Banking, said that the limited funding available for medical research “highlights the absolute need for the MRFF to go ahead at its full proposed capitalisation of $20 billion by 2022, which is expected to deliver $1 billion a year in additional health and medical research funding by 2022.

“That may sound like a lot of money, but it will only just bring Australia in line with the OECD average for funding of medical research. Currently Australia invests just 64% of the OECD average in health and medical research as a percentage of GDP.”

Association of Australian Medical Research Institutes President, Prof Brendan Crabb, said the demand for health and medical research is increasing as...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.