Date published: 
10 March 2019
Media type: 
Media release
Audience: 
General public

The Liberal National Government is providing $50 million for nationally co-ordinated medical research to improve the recovery of patients with a traumatic brain injury.

More than 20,000 Australians are hospitalised with traumatic brain injury every year.

In an Australian-first, our Government is providing dedicated funding for research into traumatic brain injury. The funding, over 10 years, is through the Government’s landmark Medical Research Future Fund.

The Traumatic Brain Injury Mission will seek to better predict recovery outcomes after a traumatic brain injury, develop new technologies and identify the most effective care and treatments.

This nationally coordinated approach will bring together paramedics, emergency physicians, intensivists, neurotrauma specialists, neurologists, psychiatrists, neuroscience researchers, neuropsychologists and advocacy representatives from all states and territories to translate research into new treatments that work for traumatic brain injury, from mild to severe trauma to the brain.

This funding will give those injured and their families hope for the future.

There is a desperate need for options to better chart the patient journey following traumatic brain injury.

By addressing the unmet needs in traumatic brain injury research, we will be able to improve the lives of thousands of Australian children and adults.

Traumatic brain injury can arise from a range of circumstances – including concussion from sport, to more serious injury following a road accident or an elderly person having a fall.

Symptoms span a spectrum of severity, such as deficits in cognition through to vegetative states.

Patients can also experience lack of emotional control, poor mental health, disrupted balance and sleep disturbances. This can have long-lasting impacts on both patients and their families.

Some patients recover quickly and completely and others do not. This mission will examine factors including what interventions can improve the chances of recovery.

The lifetime cost of each traumatic brain injury in Australia is estimated at $2.5 million for moderate and $4.8 million for severe injuries.

This funding is further demonstration of our Government’s commitment to health and medical research – and how the Medical Research Future Fund is enabling unprecedented support to the Australian research community.

Our researchers already punch above their weight internationally, and the Medical Research Future Fund is ensuring that our best and brightest can continue their valuable work.

The Medical Research Future Fund will double Australia’s investment in health and medical research and further enhance our global reputation for research excellence.

Our Government’s strong economic management ensures we continue to invest record amounts of funding into vital health initiatives including mental health, life-saving medicines, Medicare and hospitals.