Media Release

The Value of Medicines Award Celebrates New Zealand's Finest Health Researchers

By Dr Lee Mathias
15 Jul 2014

The 2014 Value of Medicines Award is now open for entries.

Medicines New Zealand is looking for nominations for its fourth annual Value of Medicines Award. The $20,000 prize will be presented to a researcher or clinician whose work shows the potential to improve the health of New Zealanders and maybe even save lives through their research.

Previous winner Dr Conroy Wong earned the award in 2013 with his research on azithromycin treatment in patients with bronchiectasis. In 2012, Dr Sally Eyers took the prize for her high-impact work on the safe dosing of paracetamol in children; and in 2011 Professor Ian Reid won the award for world leading research into treatments for osteoporosis.

Speaking about how the prize has impacted his research work, Dr Conroy Wong of Middlemore Hospital in Auckland said: "We were able to use the funding to develop a small project evaluating the potential role of nicotinamide in patients with respiratory disease."

"The funding allowed us to perform a small proof of concept study prior to obtaining funding for a more definitive study. The award allowed our research fellow to start the project immediately and without the uncertainty of obtaining grant funding."

The $20,000 award aims to stimulate research and advance understanding, effectiveness or safety of the use of medicines or vaccines. Work nominated for the award should have direct relevance to the current or future provision of healthcare in New Zealand.

Kevin Sheehy, General Manager of Medicines New Zealand said: "Medicines and vaccines are a life-saving and life-changing element of overall healthcare and this award recognises the crucial role they play in keeping New Zealanders healthy. It also encourages the continued research into new medicines and vaccines that will help us tackle the health challenges of the future."

Medicines New Zealand encourages any researcher or clinician whose work aims to demonstrate the value of medicines to apply. Entries close on 22 September 2014 and the winner will be announced at a Medicines New Zealand public meeting in Auckland on 22 October 2014.


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