With the increasing burden of chronic disease, mental health, drug, alcohol abuse and an ageing population, Australia’s emergency departments and services are playing a pivotal role in delivering best practice medical care. Forward looking, innovative emergency medicine research is going to be vital in sustaining and improving the state of national healthcare.
Working along this line is Emergency Medicine Foundation (EMF), an Australasian non-profit organization dedicated to funding evidence-based research to help save lives in medical emergencies. They also help raise the profile of emergency medicine research and foster the transfer of research outcomes into real and practical benefits in medical emergencies.
EMF aims to fund innovative researchers and research initiatives that will improve patient care in a medical emergency, as well as deliver tangible economic benefits for the national healthcare system.
With the vision of making Australia an international leader in emergency medicine research, EMF plays a critical role in developing and funding leading-edge research in this field as well as helping mobilize research outcomes into clinical care.
The foundation runs two emergency medicine research programs: a highly successful Queensland program and a national Rural and Remote program. They also run a Research Support Network (RSN) for emergency medicine research in Queensland public hospitals. This Network is a strategic initiative to support and foster research by emergency medicine clinicians and staff. Through this network, EMF is providing on the ground Research Development Managers who facilitate research projects, multi-disciplinary collaborations and the translation of new knowledge into better clinical practice.
EMF has developed a five-year strategy for establishing both national and additional state-based emergency medicine research programs. This strategy includes several clear objectives.
Identify opportunities for state-based research programs. EMF has demonstrated considerable success in building research capability within the front line emergency health workforce in Queensland, making the State a leader in emergency medicine innovation. Their objective is to achieve the same outcomes by negotiating with state governments to establish further state-based emergency medicine research programs.
Expand the Research Support Network. EMF will gauge the potential to expand their Research Support Network. Based on the initial success of this program, it has the potential to provide invaluable support for collaborative, multi-site research by emergency health professionals. Financial support for the Network could be tied to state-based and national research programs.
Grow the Queensland Research Program. In renegotiating their funding agreement with Queensland Health, EMF will lobby to expand the funding criteria for this Program to enable access for a wider range of emergency medicine professionals.
Knowledge mobilization. Translating research outcomes into practice strengthens the ability for people to receive the best healthcare in the best location. EMF will explore mechanisms for embedding research translation and knowledge mobilisation into better evidence-based practice.
Established in 2007 in Queensland, EMF has achieved the following in ten years:
Queensland research grants
- Awarded 131 grants totalling $12.95 million
- Received 239 grant applications totally $30.42 million
- Their researchers have published 250+ journal articles and book chapters and made 150+ presentations in conferences (abstracts, papers, posters and oral) and as invited speakers
- Funded 80 clinical trials, clinical studies and patient data analysis projects involving 218,000+ patients
- Developed extensive national and international research networks connecting Queensland researchers with the best in the world, including 180+ collaborators in 80 active research projects 180+ research collaborators in 80 active research projects
- 4 projects estimated to be currently delivering up to $43.7 million in economic benefits to the Queensland healthcare system
- Research projects secured $20.3 million in leveraged and in-kind funding as well as linked grants
- Invested $150,000 in rural and remote research grants through philanthropic donations
- Developed a world-class grant governance framework (similar to the NHMRC), which is highly-transparent, robust and rigorous.
- Their Research Evaluation Panel (peer reviewers) is drawn from within Australia and overseas.
- Their grant administration platform provides a best-practice governance system capable of expansion to include additional grant programs.
If you want to learn more about the foundation or interested in applying for a research grant, visit their website at www.emergencyfoundation.org.au