MS Research Australia, in conjunction with MS Australia, advocates on behalf of people with MS to certain government agencies and other regulatory bodies. Although MS impacts people differently, there are common, fundamental issues for people affected by the disease.
While MS Australia is the peak body for national advocacy for people with MS in Australia. MS Research Australia supports and collaborates with MS Australia in this work. However, MS Research Australia is also committed to ensuring that the research findings and research evidence are translated into better outcomes for all people with MS. To this end MS Research Australia makes advocacy submissions (scroll to the bottom of the page to view our submissions) to relevant public consultations from a range of sources including:
- Government departments aiming to change legislation about healthcare, access to treatments and services, and support for medical research (e.g. House of Representatives Standing Committees, the Commonwealth or State Departments of Health).
- Therapeutic Goods Association (TGA) which decides whether a medication can be prescribed in Australia and the conditions under which they can be prescribed.
- Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Council (PBAC) which makes recommendations as to whether a medication should be made available through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and is therefore eligible for subsidy from the Australian government.
MS Research Australia also liaises directly with government and state-based funding bodies to advocate for an increased focus on research and better treatments for people with MS, including:
- National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) the national funding body for health and medical research in Australia.
- Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) which will provide grants to support health and medical research and innovation from 2017 onwards. These grants will aim to translate research findings into clinical practice, with the objective of improving the health and wellbeing of all Australians.
- Commonwealth Government Department of Health – an important and long term national funding partner organisation of MS Research Australia.
- State Government Health and Medical Research Departments
MS Research Australia works collaboratively with other like-minded charities including via The Australian Immunological Alliance.
Globally, MS Research Australia is involved in research advocacy activities for people with MS, via the following strategic alliances, membership and/or endorsements;
- Multiple Sclerosis International Federation (MSIF)
- International Progressive MS Alliance
- MS Brain Health: Time Matters in MS – Global Health Initiative
Please see below recent consultation responses made by MS Research Australia
Federal and State Government inquiries
- Submission to the Inquiry into The Current Barriers to Patient Access to Medicinal Cannabis in Australia – Joint Submission with MSA – December 2019
- Submission to Australian Centre for Cannabinoid Clinical and Research Excellence Prescribing Guidance Stakeholder Consultation – Joint Submission with MSA – March 2019
- Submission to the Inquiry into the Health and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 (Medicinal Cannabis) – Queensland Health Joint Submission with MSA – January 2019
- Senate Community Affairs References Committee inquiry into the availability and accessibility of diagnostic imaging equipment around Australia – October 2017
- Submission to the Inquiry into the Public Health (Medicinal Cannabis) Bill 2016, Queensland Health – Joint submission with MSA – July 2016
- Cannabis use for medical purposes Amendment Bill 2014 – Joint submission with MSA – February 2015
- Victorian law reform commissions medicinal cannabis issues paper – Joint submission with MSA – April 2015
Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee
- Siponimod PBAC submission for secondary progressive MS – November 2019
- Fingolimod lower dose PBAC submission – July 2019
- Natalizumab PBAC submission – July 2019
- Lemtrada second dosing PBAC submission – November 2018
- Mavenclad PBAC submission – June 2018
- Cladribine submission to PBAC – February 2018
- Copaxone PBAC submission – July 2017
- OCREVUS (Ocrelizumab) for primary progressive MS – November 2017 PBAC Agenda
- Ocrelizumab PBAC submission – July 2017
Therapeutic Goods Administration
- Submission to the TGA consultation on IVD companion diagnostics – Dec 2018
- Submission to the Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling (Medicinal Cannabis) – November 2018
- MS Research Australia submission Black triangle scheme – August 2017
- Regulation of autologous cell and tissue therapies – October 2016
- Cannabinoids rescheduling TGA joint submission with MSA – February 2016
- CTN submission regarding adoption of EMA guidelines – August 2015
- Submission consultation on regulation of autologous stem cell treatments – March 2015
National Health and Medical Research Council/Medical Research Future Fund
- Submission to the Medical Research Future Fund Stem Cell Therapies Mission Roadmap Consultation – November 2019
- Submission to the Medical Research Future Fund Priorities Consultation – August 2018
- Joint letter MS Research Australia/JDRF/Asthma Australia on MRFF strategy and priorities
- MRFF Priorities submission two year priority
- MRFF strategy submission five year strategy
- NHMRC structural review submission
- Response MRFF amendments