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04 Apr 2019

Doherty Institute responds to Federal Budget

Positive new funding initiatives for women, indigenous health and medical research were part of the 2019-20 Federal Budget released last night.

The Doherty Institute welcomed the government’s commitment to the planned capitalisation of the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF), with $20 billion in funding to be secured by 2020-21.

This will see Australia dedicate more funding to medical research than any other country.

The release of a 10-year plan for the MRFF, outlined the different projects set to receive investment. The projects are broken down into four areas: patients, researchers, missions and translation.

The government have also assigned $45.4 million to set up public health prevention and promotion activities around blood borne viruses and sexually transmissible infections.

This includes a welcome boost for Indigenous health, with specific initiatives for the implementation of these strategies in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

A significant $3.4 million to support women in STEM, was also announced.

Provided over four years, the funding will support an extension of the Science in Australia Gender Equity initiative led by the Australian Academy of Science and the Australian Academy of Science, as well as a digital content National Awareness Raising Initiative.

Doherty Institute Director, University of Melbourne Professor Sharon Lewin lauded the government for their support of a female-orientated funding initiative. 

“It’s so important that we nurture women in STEM and this funding will go a long way towards recognising, and developing great females in the industry,” Professor Lewin said.

“In addition, the announcement that the MRFF will proceed unchanged, has the potential to cement Australia as global leaders in the field of medical research.”

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