Go8 Media Release: Group of Eight seeks rigor in construct of Medical Research Future Fund

10 Jul 2015

The Group of Eight (Go8) has asked a Senate inquiry to ensure the Medical Research Future Fund can deliver the best return on investment. 

“The Fund is an excellent decision and it can do great things,” said Go8 Chief Executive Vicki Thomson. “It is now up to each and every one of us to ensure the structures that will drive the Fund’s management are best practice.”

Ms Thomson said in a time of fiscal restraint the Fund showed strong Government commitment to medical research. “We now have to get it absolutely right,” she said.

“For that reason the Go8’s Senate submission is calling for the legislation to include the need for independent expert review or advice as part of the process of distributing funds from the MRFF and, importantly, we are also concerned to ensure the definition of medical research for the Fund is accurate. If it is too narrow we will have issues.”

Mr Thomson said that this was illustrated by the fact that major advances in health and medicine often relied on basic research conducted in non-medical related disciplines such as IT, physics, chemistry, engineering and mathematics.  “We ignore that at our peril.”

Group of Eight universities are at the forefront of Australia’s health and medical research which accounts for around 30 percent of total Go8 expenditure on research.

Contact:  Vicki Thomson, Group of Eight Chief Executive on +61 417 808 472