News in brief: New Chair of Diabetes Australia Research Trust; Nominations for ADS Lifetime Achievement Award; NPS MedicineWise funding axed


10 May 2022

Leading health advocate is new Chair of Diabetes Australia Research Trust

Diabetes Australia has announced the appointment of leading health advocate Lucy Brogden AM as the new Chair of the Diabetes Australia Research Trust.

The Trust, which manages the Diabetes Australia Research Program, supports around 60 research projects a year with funding allocations of more than $3 million per annum.

Diabetes Australia Group CEO Justine Cain said Ms Brogden’s extensive experience working with Australian corporations would help boost investment in diabetes research projects.

Ms Cain also thanked outgoing Chair John Townend AM for his many years of commitment to supporting diabetes research.

Nominations open for 2022 ADS Lifetime Achievement Award

The Australian Diabetes Society is inviting nominations for its 2022 ADS Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Award recognises an individual who has an established history of distinguished service to education, clinical practice and/or research and training in diabetes; made a lasting contribution to diabetes; and exhibited leadership and mentorship in diabetes research and/or clinical practice on a state, national and/or international level.

Previous awardees have included Professors Timothy Davis,  Joseph Proietto, Dennis Yue and Lesley Campbell.

Nominations should be submitted to the ADS CEO, Dr Sof Andrikopoulos, before the closing Date: Monday 20 June, 2022

NPS MedicineWise calls for review on its funding

The future of NPS MedicineWise is under a cloud because the service has lost almost its entire Federal Government funding, its CEO says.

It follows the federal budget announcement back in March that the NPS would no longer receive uncontested funding to promote quality use of medicines, a cut of around $25 million annually.

The money will instead go to the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC), which will also take over the service’s website and the MedicineInsight dataset and.

The Practice Review letters sent to doctors comparing their prescribing of PBS-listed medicines with others in their specialty are also now expected to come from the commission.

NPS MedicineWise CEO Katherine Burchfield says the decision is a mistake.

“We are disappointed and concerned with what this means for Australia at a time when quality and safe use of medicines is listed as a national health priority,” she says.

“While there is no doubt that the ACSQHC has a key role to play in quality use of medicines, and has strong capabilities and networks, it performs a different role and function in the health system to that of NPS MedicineWise.”

“The two organisations should work together, using their different strengths and levers, to enact change.”

She said the service had contacted Minister for Health Greg Hunt to request he reconsider.

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