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12,000 Reasons to say no to medical research cuts in Budget

Media Release
Adam Bandt 9 May 2011

Greens MP Adam Bandt met with medical research scientists today in a final call on the government to not cut health and medical research in tomorrow's Budget.

The scientists from Melbourne's Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research presented Mr Bandt with a petition signed by 12,000 medical scientists, patients and supporters.

"Medical research is central to this nation's health and our country's economy," Mr Bandt said.

"Budgets are about setting priorities for the nation. We hope tomorrow's Budget reflects a Government that understands the economic and social benefits of properly funded medical research.

"Melbourne is one of the key homes for health and medical research in Australia, so any cuts to funding will hit my electorate hard."

Dr Krystal Evans is a research scientist working on vaccine development at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne.

"Medical research provides hope for those Australians struggling with chronic illness and for those with diseases for which there are no cure. To cut funding is to cut hope; we need more funding for discoveries, not less," Dr Evans said.

"Medical researchers right around the country have stood up for their patients and their profession. We hope the Government has heard our message and will not cut medical research in tomorrow's Budget."

"Australian scientists are leading the world in many areas of medical research. This provides Australian patients with access to the newest discoveries and therapies which improve long-term health outcomes. Medical research saves lives. Cutting medical research will cost lives."

David Riglar is also a researcher at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research working on malaria research.

"Strong medical research funding is critical to retain talented young researchers in Australia. Any cuts to funding would signify a worrying lack of support from the government and would lead to a brain drain, with our brightest researchers leaving to work on more supportive shores," David Riglar said.

"The community support for this campaign to protect health and medical research has been overwhelming. It proves that Australian's value health research and want it funded."


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