The Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) is calling on the Government to match-fund research in the sector over the next three years.
The group – which Muscular Dystrophy UK is a member of – made the announcement this week.
It follows some research it carried out in June revealing medical research charities anticipate a massive reduction in their research budgets this year.
What is the AMRC calling for?
To help lessen the impact of the reduction in research budgets, the AMRC is urging the Government to create a Life Sciences-Charity Partnership Fund. This would be a co-investment scheme between the Government and charities that provides a level of match-funding from government for future charity research over the next three years.
The fund would aim to preserve medical research charities’ unique and vital contributions to the UK’s research base and economy.
What do we think?
As a member of the AMRC, we support this proposal.
Dr Kate Adcock, Director of Research and Innovation, says:
Since the start of the pandemic we have had support from the Government through the furlough scheme. However, we were unable to access its £750m charity package, which supported charities on the frontline, not for medical research. We have already had to make some difficult decisions regarding our research funding for the year, such as the cancellation of this year’s Grant Round, and we welcome and support the plans for the creation of the fund.
Update: 21 July 2020
The Life Sciences-Charity Partnership fund has been backed by 50 cross-party MPs who have called for the government to pledge £310million to plug the gap in research funding for 2020-2021. You can read the open letter to Chancellor Rishi Sunak here.