Budget Advances Yardstick on Research & Innovation

OTTAWA, March 21, 2013 /CNW/ - The Association of Canadian Academic Healthcare Organizations (ACAHO) is encouraged to see that Budget 2013 clearly identifies the potential of world-class research and innovation as a key driver of Canada's long-term prosperity and overall quality of life.

Recognizing current economic realities, Budget 2013 contains a number of important measures which support the mission of the country's research hospitals, academic regional health authorities and their research institutes - which are engines of innovation and play a unique role in discovering and applying new knowledge that improves the health of Canadians and the performance of the health system.  ACAHO is also supportive of the Budget's focus on strengthening the role of the private sector in driving innovation and future prosperity.

"While these initiatives are crucial to our longer-term competitiveness, it is essential we have the right mix of federal policies and programs, and private, public and charitable investments that are strategically aligned to fully leverage our research from bench to bedside to business," said Mr. Glenn Brimacombe, President & CEO of ACAHO.

ACAHO welcomes the federal government's funding including the $165 million for genomics research through Genome Canada; $15 million for the Strategy on Patient-Oriented Research led by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and $225 million for the Canada Foundation for Innovation for leading-edge research infrastructure.

"Evidence shows that investments in research and innovation are key drivers in providing Canadians with access to quality health services.  At the same time, we must take full advantage of the business opportunities for bringing innovative products and services to the marketplace," said Ms. Chris Power, ACAHO Board Chair, and President & CEO of Capital District Health Authority in Halifax. "The health sector is about health, but it is also about good jobs and opportunities that contribute to sustained economic growth."

As we move forward, ACAHO continues to call on the Federal government to play an important collaborative and facilitative role - particularly when it comes to research and innovation - to accelerate improvements in health system performance.

Investing in research and innovation must be our future.  We look forward to continuing to work closely with the federal government and its agencies to ensure that Canadians reap the full rewards that come from a fully functioning health research & innovation system.

Members of ACAHO are leaders of innovative and transformational organizations that serve a unique and essential role in the system: they educate the next generation of health care professionals, advance leading-edge innovative practices through health research, and provide much of the specialized health care services to Canadians.

ACAHO Vision
To advance patient care and the health & well-being of Canadians through research discovery and innovation.

ACAHO Mission 
To create an environment in which research discovery, innovation and learning benefit patients, populations, health systems and the economy.

SOURCE: ASSOCIATION OF CANADIAN ACADEMIC HEALTHCARE ORGANIZATIONS

For further information:

Beatrice Keleher Raffoul, Vice-President, Public Affairs
Telephone: (613) 730-5818 ext 323, Cell Phone: (613) 795-4878
Fax: (613) 730-4314, E-mail: raffoul@acaho.org

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ASSOCIATION OF CANADIAN ACADEMIC HEALTHCARE ORGANIZATIONS

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