MRFF strategy and priorities

The Medical Research Future Fund's strategy and priorities guide the Australian Government's decisions on which research projects to fund.

The Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) strategy and priorities inform where the Australian Government directs its research funding. The Health Minister takes into account the MRFF strategy and priorities when deciding how to use the fund's money.

An independent group of experts called the Australian Medical Research Advisory Board (AMRAB) sets the MRFF strategy and priorities. They do this in accordance with MRFF legislation.

AMRAB carries out comprehensive national consultations before setting the MRFF strategies and priorities. This makes sure that they focus on the best areas for future research.  

The Government takes the MRFF strategy and priorities into account when deciding which projects to fund. AMRAB does not decide which projects will receive MRFF funds.

See our 10-year plan to see how we are applying the MRFF strategy and priorities to initiatives that make a difference to Australians' health.

MRFF strategy

AMRAB sets the Australian Medical Research and Innovation Strategy every 5 years. It takes into account Australia's health needs and areas that need greater investment.

The strategic platforms for 2016–21 are:

  • Strategic and international horizons – support stronger partnerships between researchers, health care professionals, governments and the community
  • Data and infrastructure – make better use of existing data and infrastructure to help improve Australia’s health and medical research
  • Health services and systems – strengthen our health services and systems research to make health care more efficient and affordable
  • Capacity and collaboration – equip researchers and health care professionals to work together
  • Trials and translation – support clinical trial networks to develop new drugs, devices, and models of care
  • Commercialisation – support researchers to find commercial partners or investors to help turn their discoveries into realities

Australian Medical Research and Innovation Strategy 2016–2021

The Australian Medical Research and Innovation Strategy 2016–2021 sets out the vision, aims, objectives, impact measurement and strategic platforms of the MRFF.

MRFF priorities

Following a national consultation, AMRAB sets the Australian Medical Research and Innovation priorities every 2 years. 

In line with the MRFF funding principles, the Government considers which initiatives will reduce burden of disease, provide practical benefits, or deliver the best value for money. The Australian Government takes the priorities into account when making funding decisions.

The priorities for 2020–2022 focus on:

  • antimicrobial resistance
  • global health challenges such as pandemics
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health
  • ageing and aged care
  • digital health tools
  • comparing the value of different health interventions
  • primary care research
  • support for health professionals to conduct their own research
  • identifying gaps where research does not address the lived experiences of patients, and fixing these
  • using existing drugs for new purposes
  • testing public health interventions to reduce chronic disease
  • supporting Australian biomedical and medical device development.

Australian Medical Research and Innovation Priorities 2020–2022

The Australian Medical Research and Innovation Priorities 2020–2022 are the third set of priorities for the MRFF. 

The strategy and priorities determine how the government chooses to use MRFF funding

Last updated: 
12 November 2020

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