The NSW ten-year strategic plan for health and medical research places a strong emphasis on the potential role of research hubs in promoting collaboration and coordinating the efforts of
geographically proximate medical research institutes, local health districts, universities and communityorientated research in Medicare Locals.

The NSW Office for Health and Medical Research (OHMR) is charged with overseeing the implementation of NSW’s ten-year strategic plan for health and medical research. OHMR is working to create a detailed strategy to guide the future development of health and medical research hubs.

This document proposes the role, structure and purpose of hubs and suggests key stakeholder organisations with which they will interact. The paper will serve as the development guide for
research hubs in NSW.

NSW’s ten-year strategic plan for health and medical research recommended an enhanced role for research hubs that included key roles in fostering translation, innovation and research capacity.

The hub strategy addresses:

  • the enhanced role of hubs
  • a structural framework to engage the health and medical research sector in local, state and national health and medical research priority setting
  • collaboration in the implementation of initiatives

By local health districts being integrally involved in research hubs, clinical and health services will be enhanced not just by the research, but also by the culture of research and evidenced based practice that develops across the services.

By enhancing a research culture and straddling governance boundaries between clinicians, researchers and organisations, the strategy provides platforms for driving local and system wide translational research initiatives. It also provides a platform for taking a state-wide approach to supporting research infrastructure and improving research governance.

The hub strategy aims to bring the expertise within the state together to make NSW more competitive nationally and internationally.

Key performance indicators for the hubs will be developed around key themes – collaboration, integration, and translation.

An external consultant was engaged to consult widely with the current hubs, their respective local health districts and a number of NSW Health pillars (Agency for Clinical Innovation, NSW Cancer Institute and the Clinical Excellence Commission) to develop a state-wide policy framework.

The NSW health and medical research sector provided feedback on the draft paper in May 2013.

There was overwhelming support of the paper. The main changes as a result of the feedback were changes in hub governance, reduction in bureaucracy and greater clarity of the role of the OHMR.

Read the NSW Health and Medical Research Hub Strategy here…

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