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Shadow Health Minister Peter Dutton today called on Tanya Plibersek to immediately match the Coalition’s commitments to provide funding certainty for medical research, streamline grant applications and approvals, prioritise clinical trial reforms and provide $35 million for the Juvenile Diabetes Clinical Trial Network for Type 1 Diabetes.

Minister Plibersek today had ‘medical research’ added to her official title, despite the Labor Government having presided over funding and policy confusion for this important sector.

  “Under Labor, medical research has endured threatened cuts of $400 million in the 2011 Budget and then changes in the 2012 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook that occurred without consultation and affected funding arrangements for existing projects”, Mr Dutton said.

“Labor fails to understand that projects have long lead times and require policy and funding certainty.

“Australia has had incredible success in this area, with a number of Nobel Prize winners and many advances otherwise.

“The previous Coalition Government worked closely with the sector to promote its development and provided a five-fold increase in funding.

“The Government should encourage our best and brightest minds to pursue their careers in Australia’s medical research sector by immediately matching the Coalition’s commitments to date.

“Instead, the now Minister for Health and Medical Research hasn’t even responded to the Government’s own McKeon Review which reported in February. 

“Adding medical research to the Minister’s title is just more political spin in the absence of matched commitments from this chaotic Government.

“While Labor has been squabbling over internal issues and deciding on new titles as part of another Ministerial reshuffle, the health and medical research community continues to be neglected,” Mr Dutton said.

[ENDS]

Media contact: Tom Fleming 0437 250 045
Posted in: Media Releases
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