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NZ Health Research Strategy to help ‘change the face of heal

Auckland DHB welcomes the inaugural New Zealand Health Research Strategy, which sets a vision of creating a world-leading health research and innovation system by 2027.

Launched today by the Minister of Health, the strategy reinforces the role the health sector, including District Health Boards, has to play in health research, training and service delivery.

Auckland DHB is a leader in clinical research in New Zealand. The DHB’s Chief Medical Officer, Professor Margaret Wilsher, says: “We strongly support the strategy, which I believe will help change the face of healthcare in New Zealand.”

Margaret says there are many opportunities for DHBs to collaborate with universities for health research purposes.

“Auckland DHB partners with the University of Auckland in the Auckland Academic Health Alliance (AAHA), a research, teaching and clinical delivery relationship.

“AAHA’s jointly funded research grants enable scientists and career researchers to join up with busy clinicians to study important clinical problems, test innovative solutions and translate scientific research findings into clinical care – from bench to bedside,” she says.

The New Zealand Health Research strategy outlines that the Ministry of Health will engage with the health sector on how best to act on research opportunities and create a vibrant research environment. Funding models and infrastructure requirements are also being considered.

Margaret says: “We applaud the initiative which recognises that clinical research in New Zealand could be strengthened by further embedding research into clinical networks, improving the environment for clinical trials and promoting industry investment. We look forward to working with the Ministry of Health and other key healthcare agencies to strengthen the clinical research environment and health services research.

“We also applaud the focus the strategy has on inequity and look forward to opportunities for funded research that will make a difference to areas that are important to New Zealand, such as cancer mortality and perioperative mortality rates for Māori.”

Auckland DHB also has close links with the Health Research Council, (HRC) the Government’s principal funder of health research. In the 2017 funding round results released earlier this month, a Starship clinician was awarded an HRC programme grant for a world-first study programme to examine whether there is a link between babies being given paracetamol, and the development of asthma. This is the first HRC programme to be hosted by a DHB.


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