Macquarie University awarded $10.7 million to lead research into Australia’s health system

6 December 2016

Professor Jeffrey Braithwaite, Founding Director of the Australian Institute of Health Innovation at Macquarie University, along with Professor Enrico Coiera and Professor Johanna Westbrook, have secured $10.7 million in funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and partners to establish a new Partnership Centre whose aim will be to create an adaptive and financially-effective health system for future generations of Australians.

The grant is one of only three Partnership Centres that NHMRC has ever awarded and Macquarie University will be the administering institution for the Centre over the next five years, as it conducts research that will underpin the sustainability of the health system.

“A sustainable health system is one that flexes, endures and adapts to constantly changing pressures. Such resilience must come despite limited access to physical, financial and human resources while delivering improved population and individual health and wellbeing,” said Professor Braithwaite.

The Partnership Centre will focus on new ways to minimise waste, improve productivity and maximise the effectiveness of every dollar spent and hour worked in the health system. The researchers will look at old and ineffective care models and practices which must be set aside in favour of innovations in care delivery, prevention, financing incentives, and new technology.

Professor Braithwaite indicated that to date, innovation has led too often to marginal improvements in outcomes, and it comes with substantial increases in costs—an unsustainable cocktail.

“This grant brings together researchers, policymakers, managers, clinicians and patients in a concerted effort to improve the way we deliver care to our citizens. It is one of the most important challenges we face in the 21st century. An effective and efficient health system is the hallmark of a caring, functioning society,” Professor Braithwaite concluded.

With the Australian Institute of Health Innovation, the country’s foremost institute on health systems improvement in the lead, the partnership involves representatives from the University of Queensland (Professor Robyn Ward and Professor Leonard C Gray), Sydney Local Health District (Dr Teresa Anderson), Monash Health (Professor Helena Teede), Consumers Health Forum of Australia (Ms Leanne Wells), Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (Dr Trent Yeend), Bond University (Professor Paul Glasziou), The University of Melbourne (Professor Anthony Scott), University of Adelaide (Professor Jonathan D Karnon), and Cabrini Institute and Monash University (Professor Rachelle Buchbinder). In addition, representatives from many bodies, groups and agencies will be involved in the research.

For further details see the NHMRC website.


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