Stroke recovery research boost

The Stroke Foundation has welcomed the federal government’s $1 million research boost to support new treatment options to aid stroke recovery.

The Return to Life, Return to Work research package has the potential to provide new medicines to working-age Australians impacted by stroke.

Stroke Foundation Chief Executive Officer Sharon McGowan applauded the government for investing the future of Australia’s younger stroke survivors.

“Around 142,500 Australian stroke survivors are of working age. International evidence shows incidence of stroke among younger people is increasing, so we must do more to ensure tailored services and supports are available,” Ms McGowan said.

“Stroke strikes the brain and can leave a lasting impact on independence, family life, finances and careers – particularly for those in their 20s to 50s.

“While advancements in acute stroke treatment mean more Australians are surviving, recovery can be a long and challenging journey physically, cognitively and mentally.

“This funding package has the potential to provide breakthrough treatments to those suffering from the impact of stroke, allowing them to optimise their recovery and return to the things in life that fulfil them most.”

The Return to Life, Return to Work research package has been funded through the Medical Research Future Fund. Funding will be provided over three years. The research package includes Australia’s first multi-centred clinical trial of the drug perispinal entanercept in chronic stroke.

This funding builds on the $1.5 million announced by Minister for Health Greg Hunt in August to allow the Stroke Foundation and Cochrane Australia to provide health professionals with the latest clinical guidelines and real-time research findings, to give stroke patients the best chance for survival.

Stroke facts

  • A stroke occurs every nine minutes in Australia.
  • Estimated 142,500 (30 percent of 475,000) of Australian stroke survivors are of working age.
  • 20 strokes a day impact Australians of working-age.
  • International evidence indicates stroke among younger people is on the increase in large part due to lifestyle factors.
  • More than $972 million in lost earnings is caused by reduced unemployment due to stroke in working age Australians.

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