Funding for Medical Research

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One of the most demanding spheres for research work is that of medicine. The experiments and studies that are conducted need extreme precision and high level of knowledge. The reason is that such studies are not merely for attaining a degree or high grades. They have significance for the society at large. Because of its special value, the parameters associated with medical research are also critical.

Importance of medical research

The contribution of medical research over the years for improving the quality of life has been unparalleled. By enhancing longevity and eradicating several diseases, medical science is making constant progress. Medical solutions can never be 100% exact, in the sense that what may work for one person may not be effective for another patient. So, medical practitioners need to keep studying and observing the results of drugs. Moreover, with new ways of treatment coming up, doctors also need to keep abreast of the studies through journals, conferences and books. They must know how to apply the findings of research.

Funding sources

Conducting medical research is a costly affair. There are several components required for doing the tests, which might be expensive even if the quantity is small. Then there is the need for specialised equipment. Such facilities are not available at all universities and scholars may have to hire advanced labs for conducting research. Hence, there is need for considerable funds in order to complete a medical research project. Funding can be availed from:

  • Government agencies: several agencies, like the Medical Research Council (UK), National Health and Medical Research Council (Australia), Indian Council of Medical Research (India) and National Institute of Health (USA) contribute a substantial share towards advancing medical research in various spheres, like clinical research, biochemistry, genetics and others.
  • Non Government organisations: there are many funding bodies which work on the basis of charity. They collect money through donations and provide the same for furthering medical research. The Wellcome Trust (UK) and the Bill and Miranda Gates Foundation (USA) are some leading examples of such organisations.
  • Corporate funding: there are several successful corporate entities that contribute towards medical studies. While most of the contributions are from pharmaceutical companies and others related to the field of medicine, there are some companies which support such research as a part of corporate social responsibility.

Whatever be the source of funding, scholars will have to prepare an impressive white paper or prospectus to highlight the importance of their research project. The role of funding body in the field, extent of funding required, expected results and the benefits that will accrue will also have to be mentioned clearly.