WHO CC for Viral Hepatitis

15 May 2020

Funding boost for WHO Collaborating Centre for Viral Hepatitis

The WHO Collaborating Centre for Viral Hepatitis has received a significant funding boost through a $1.6 million grant from the Commonwealth Government to continue its crucial work in the surveillance and mapping of viral hepatitis.

The Blood Borne Viruses and Sexually Transmissible Infections Surveillance Grant will support the Doherty Institute Viral Hepatitis Surveillance Program, comprising the National Viral Hepatitis Mapping Project, and the Surveillance for Hepatitis B Indicators project for the next four years.

The Royal Melbourne Hospital’s Professor Benjamin Cowie, WHO Collaborating Centre for Viral Hepatitis Director, said this funding will support the public health research activities of the Centre with the objective of developing improved strategic information to guide the viral hepatitis response in Australia.

“This grant will support a committed team of award-winning early and mid-career researchers who undertake research in support of viral hepatitis elimination, that has been recognised internationally,” Professor Cowie said.

“An important output of this work is the mapping of viral hepatitis burden of disease, responses and cascades of care for hepatitis B and C at national, state and local levels.”

The team will also develop further models to measure Australia’s progress towards our national strategy targets for hepatitis B by 2022, and the global elimination targets for 2030.

Part of Royal Melbourne Hospital’s Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory at the Doherty Institute, the WHO Collaborating Centre for Viral Hepatitis is one of only five Collaborating Centres for Viral Hepatitis around the world.

It supports the global control of viral hepatitis through basic research and reference virology, treatment and prevention initiatives, and training and capacity building.