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2016-06: Medical Research Future Fund

The Australian Medical Research Advisory Board is tasked with determining the Australian Medical Research and Innovation Strategy and Priorities for the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF). The MRFF is expected to make its first funding grants in 20167-17. The amount of funding available over the first two years is approximately $160 million. Over several years, the funding available is expected to grow until it reaches $1 billion per annum. In May-june 2016, the Advisory Board called for submissions on the strategy and priorities.

AAG made a submission advocating for a National Ageing Well Research Strategy, and suggesting the following priority areas for funding future ageing research projects:

  1. Increase understanding of multi-factorial geriatric syndromes and develop holistic approaches to addressing age-related diseases.
  2. Promote positive community attitudes to ageing and an understanding of issues of diversity among older people (e.g. CALD, LGBTI, ATSI, rural and remote, low socio-economic and other special needs groups). There needs to be a more targeted focus on these under-represented groups, and consideration should be given to quarantining research funding to enable this.
  3. Promote healthy ageing, including prevention and intervention strategies, supporting psychosocial needs and age-friendly communities.
  4. Identify best practice methods in aged care service delivery,v and improve the integration of primary care, acute care, aged care and disability support. This includes ensuring access to care when people need it, equity of access to care, and supporting consumer engagement in decision-making about care.
  5. Address issues around housing and the built environment to better enable older people to live independently for longer in their communities.
  6. Identify technological solutions for older people, including assistive, medical and aged care technologies.
  7. Identify geographic and demographic patterns of ageing to ensure adequate services and support are available, particularly for Indigenous and rural and remote communities.
  8. Estimate the economic impact of an ageing population, including expenditure on service provision and pensions, workforce participation, and the hidden value that older people contribute to the economy.

You can read AAG's submission on the consultations here.

The MRFF published its strategy and priorities on 10 November 2016. You can read them here.

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