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Commitment from Federal Government to boost research into cardiovascular disease

Federal Health Minister, The Hon. Greg Hunt MP, has today promised a $220 million funding boost from the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) to help researchers tackle one of Australia’s major health burdens - cardiovascular disease.

Cardiovascular disease remains one of the leading causes of disability and death in Australia, with over 4.2 million people living with heart disease, costing the economy $12 billion a year.

The Mission for Cardiovascular Health program, under the MRFF, will support Australian researchers make game-changing discoveries and rapidly convert breakthroughs into better health outcomes for those suffering from cardiovascular disease.

This ambitious $220 million will be committed over ten years and is expected to significantly boost employment opportunities, attracting the best and brightest scientists in the field to revolutionise how heart disease and stroke is diagnosed, treated and potentially prevented.

Ultimately, this investment will place Australia at the global forefront for improving health outcomes, bolstering innovation and generating significant commercial interest from private industry sectors. 

The funding announcement is today being applauded by the country’s leading cardiovascular research institutes, including the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute.

According to Professor Bob Graham, Executive Director of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, this funding boost will transform the way we approach the current cardiovascular disease epidemic in Australia.

“Today the Federal Government has shown it’s committed to preventing an impending health crisis. Every 12 minutes, one Australian will die from heart disease. That’s 120 families a day who are torn apart from a potentially preventable death. Research is needed now more than ever to help solve this epidemic of cardiovascular disease,” Professor Graham explained.

“We have young, fit and healthy women having sporadic heart attacks who present with no apparent risk factors. This is a condition known as spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) and it accounts for around 25% of heart attacks in women under the age of 50. These women deserve to know why this is happening, and it’s only through research that we’ll be able to provide them with the answer.”

The Mission for Cardiovascular Health program will enable new research programs to be born that address key gaps in knowledge, create new clinical trials and ensure patients have the best evidence-based care anytime, anywhere.

 “The Mission is going to have a substantial impact on fast-tracking the speed of discovery. The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute is a key part of a national community actively working towards protecting future generations from becoming a heart disease statistic.”

“This funding will go a long way in addressing a multi-disciplined problem and the Federal Government should be commended for being a part of the solution,” Professor Graham added.

The Medical Research Future Fund’s Mission for Cardiovascular Health program was made possible by a coalition of the country’s leading heart researchers, known as the Australian Cardiovascular Alliance (ACvA) who have rallied for fairer funding for cardiovascular disease research.

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