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March 2011, Brisbane
Cancer is the third leading cause of death for Australia’s First Peoples and the second largest contributor to life years lost, but it rarely features as a specific concern in health policies and strategy documents.
To address this, the Lowitja Institute sponsored a Roundtable that brought together leading cancer experts, service providers, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cancer survivors, advocacy groups and community representatives to identify priorities in cancer research. One of the outcomes from the gathering was the need for a nationally integrated approach to tackling cancer. This resulted in the development of a funding proposal for a Centre for Research Excellence (CRE) in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cancer. In March 2011, the Lowitja Institute hosted a Quality Assurance Workshop (QAW) to improve the proposal submission. A second QAW was held in April 2012, before the interview with the NHMRC panel.
In August 2012, Menzies School of Health Research was awarded $2.5 million for the CRE in Discovering Indigenous Strategies to Improve Cancer Outcomes via Engagement, Research Translation and Training (DISCOVER-TT).
1. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) & Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2008, The Health and Welfare of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, ABS and AIHW, Canberra.