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Focus sharpens on health research investment

The Ministries of Health, and Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), have announced a new health research framework they say sets out a national vision for health research that will help to guide Government funding in the sector.

Chief Science Advisor for the Ministry of Health, Ian Town said the framework was a major step towards ensuring health research in New Zealand brought maximum benefit to all New Zealanders.

‘This is a paradigm shift – it’s a hugely important piece of work which has significant implications for health research in New Zealand,” Dr Town said.

“It’s all about asking why we’re embarking on specific research programs and asking how these programs are going to benefit our communities.”

He said it would drive clearer roles and responsibilities and, ultimately, better health for individuals, whānau and communities.

General Manager Science, Innovation and International at MBIE, Peter Crabtree said the new framework was a key part of the New Zealand Health Research Strategy (NZHRS), which aimed to build a world-leading health research and innovation system.

Under the new framework, researchers applying for Government funding will need to address why their research is important to New Zealand; consider mana tāngata and advancing Māori health; ensure their research has the best chance of delivering impact and that it included measures to improve health equity.

Implementing the NZHRS and the Prioritisation Framework is the joint responsibility of MBIE, the Ministry of Health and the Health Research Council.

Details of the framework are available to download from the Health Research Council website at this PS News link.