Date published: 
9 August 2018
Media type: 
Media release
General public

The Turnbull Government will provide medical research funding for prostate cancer and infertility, marking the first step towards a new National Male Health Strategy.

The National Male Health Strategy 2020 - 2030, aims to improve the health and wellbeing of all men in Australia over the next decade, especially those at the greatest risk of poor health.

Experts in male health, representatives of disadvantaged populations and peak medical bodies met in Canberra today to develop the new ten year plan.

Together we identified key issues and priorities to help us improve the health outcomes for men across the country.

Two National Health and Medical Research Council grants totalling $1.3 million will go towards new approaches for prostate cancer and research into understanding male infertility.

Professor Melissa Southey at Monash University is working on a new way to manage prostate and breast cancer using precision medicine, which will substantially improve health outcomes.

Prostate cancer is the sixth leading cause of death for males. It is also the most common cancer among men, with more than 16,000 cases diagnosed each year.

Only recently the Turnbull Government created a new Medicare item for the 26,000 men who need a prostate cancer MRI each year.

The University of Newcastle’s Professor Brett Nixon is working to improve our understanding of sperm function and the causes of male infertility. His work will be used to develop innovative therapies to help the one in 35 men with a fertility issue.

We know that men have different health challenges to women, and that their outcomes are often worse.

Almost 50 per cent of men have one or more chronic illnesses including back problems, arthritis, asthma, cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or mental health conditions.

Coronary heart disease, lung cancer and dementia remain the leading causes of death for men, while nearly one in two men will experienced a mental health condition in their lives.

Despite these statistics, men are less likely than women to seek help.

The ten year strategy will aim for equal health outcomes for all population groups at risk of poor health.