Welsh Government

£18m investment in health and social care research in Wales

14 May 2015

Major research projects into cancer, public health, primary and emergency care, mental health and the effects of aging will benefit from an £18m investment by the Welsh Government, Deputy Health Minister Vaughan Gething announced today.

The confirmation of the three-year package of funding comes as the Welsh Government unveils a major restructuring of its health and social care research arm.

Health and Care Research Wales – formerly known as NISCHR – will ensure that future investment by the Welsh Government in health and social care research supports and develops excellence and has a positive impact on the public, public services and the Welsh economy.

One of the core ambitions for Health and Care Research Wales in the coming years is for Wales to become a centre of excellence for public involvement in research – where researchers and the public can work in partnership to influence and deliver research which matters to the people of Wales.

Over the next three years, £18.15m - £6m a  year – will be invested in eight dedicated research centres and units across Wales in mental health, cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, primary and emergency care, aging and dementia and neurological and neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington’s disease, epilepsy, stroke, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis.  

Mr Gething said:

“The Welsh Government wants Wales to be internationally recognised for excellent health and social care research which has a positive impact on the health, wellbeing and prosperity of people in Wales. The research our universities conduct today will determine the care our NHS and social services deliver tomorrow.

“Today marks the beginning of a new era for government-backed research; one which builds on the outstanding endeavours of the past to ensure that the new Health and Care Research Wales is able to purposefully address the challenges we face in Wales today and in the future. 

“There is no doubt that research and development plays a central role in improving health and wellbeing, effective services and wealth generation. The £18m package of investment I’m announcing today will fund the vital, high-quality research needed to turn our aspiration of achieving better health and social care for everyone in Wales into reality.”

The allocations are:

Research centres

  • National Centre for Mental Health, Cardiff, Bangor and Swansea universities - £3m
  • Wales Cancer Research Centre, Cardiff, Bangor and Swansea universities, Velindre NHS Trust - £4.5m
  • PRIME Centre (Wales Centre for Primary and Emergency Care Research), Cardiff, Bangor, South Wales and Swansea universities - £2.7m
  • Centre for Ageing and Dementia Research, Swansea, Bangor and Cardiff universities - £1.8m
  • National Centre for Population Health and Wellbeing Research, Swansea and Cardiff universities and Public Health Wales - £2.25m

Research units

  • Wales Kidney Research Unit, Cardiff University - £1.2m
  • Brain Repair and Intracranial Neurotherapeutics (BRAIN) Unit, Cardiff University - £1.2m
  • Diabetes Research Unit Cymru, Swansea University - £1.5m