Date published: 
22 October 2019
Media type: 
Media release
Audience: 
General public

The Morrison Government is calling for proposals for $3 million in research to better understand the causes and improve diagnosis of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS).

Tomorrow's opening of the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) competitive Targeted Call for Research (TCR) is designed to help stimulate quality collaborative research in this area.

ME/CFS is a complex condition that leaves patients with persistent disabling fatigue, particularly after general activity. Other symptoms that range from mild to severe include muscle and joint pain, as well as headaches. Little is known about its causes, which makes diagnosis and treatment difficult.

This TCR enables Australian researchers to identify approaches that may assist patients presenting with ME/CFS symptoms to be accurately diagnosed and treated.

It will also provide the opportunity to develop a scientifically valid, evidence-based understanding of the pathophysiology and causes of ME/CFS and its impacts.

To be competitive for funding, applications will need to address the aims of the call, as outlined in the grant opportunity guidelines ensuring outcomes that will deliver high-quality evidence on ME/CFS.

This TCR is in addition to the Government’s announcement on 20 September 2019 of funding for a health economics study of the impacts and costs associated with ME/CFS, funded through the Medical Research Future Fund’s Targeted Health System and Community Organisation Research Program.

There is a lot more to be done to help Australians living with ME/CFS.

Health and medical research is one of the four pillars of the Morrison Government’s Long-Term National Health Plan.

The 2019–20 Federal Budget provided a record total of $9 billion over the next 10 years to support Australia’s health and medical research sector, the future of Australian medicine and to improve medical services and treatments for Australian families when they need it most.

Applications for funding will be open from 23 October 2019 to 29 January 2020.

More information, including the grant opportunity guidelines, will be available on www.grants.gov.au.

Ministers: