Senate Select Committee on COVID-19 – The Australian Government’s Response
In the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australian Government has made key decisions that directly impact the economy and the daily lives of every Australian. The purpose of these decisions has been to slow the rate of infection, otherwise known as to “flatten the curve”, and ensure the health system continues to operate efficiently and effectively, especially if presented with large numbers of infected patients. To date, this has resulted in Australia having one of the highest testing rates and lowest confirmed cases and deaths in the world, per capita.
The George Institute believes the Australian Government’s long-term investment in health and medical research has helped Australia effectively respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes ongoing support for the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and establishing the $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF). In the post pandemic recovery, further government support and investment in health and medical research will ensure Australia remains innovative and competitive.
Like most businesses and not-for-profit organisations, The George Institute has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a global medical research institute, we are continuing our work to improve the health of millions of people worldwide. There is much work ahead to better understand the long-term health implications from patients with COVID-19, particularly those who have co-morbidities and non-communicable diseases.
The George Institute welcomes the opportunity to make this submission to the Senate Select Committee on COVID-19. There are seven key recommendations related to the Australian Government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic and related matters, including the importance of investing in medical research and targeting non-communicable diseases.