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Minister attends Weary Dunlop Research Symposium.

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Minister for Veterans' Affairs Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence

Friday 4 November 2005 VA197


The Sir Edward Dunlop Medical Research Foundation was a valuable part of Weary Dunlop’s legacy to our nation, addressing significant issues that affected the health of Australian veterans and serving members, the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, De-Anne Kelly, said today.

Opening the Sir Edward Dunlop Medical Research Foundation Symposium in Melbourne, Mrs Kelly congratulated the board and staff on establishing the Foundation as one of the most prestigious medical research foundations in Australia and for 20 years of research on the health of the veteran and defence force communities.

The symposium brings together leading researchers to discuss veterans’ and wider health concerns, including sessions focussing on the treatment of mass casualties, bio-terrorism and the threat of emerging infections.

Mrs Kelly said service in the armed forces was both rewarding and exciting, providing men and women with opportunities and challenges they normally would not have.

"However, this service places unique demands on those who undertake it, which can result in injuries and illnesses that are beyond the scope of the civilian workplace," Mrs Kelly said.

"The Australian Government values the contribution of its servicemen and women, and has a long standing commitment to their health and wellbeing."

Mrs Kelly said the Government had provided the Foundation with funding totalling $420 000, most recently through sponsorship of the Foundation’s inaugural symposium last year, as well as this year’s gathering.

"The Government is also supporting a range of other medical research projects through the Health and Medical Applied Research program," she said

"During 2004-05, 20 projects received payments totalling more than $1 million, and nearly half of these are ongoing projects.

"These projects include the health of Australian veterans of the Korean War, sleep apnoea, the mortality of Vietnam veterans, and a study into the palliative care of veterans.

"The Australian Government recognises that the health needs of our veteran community changes over time and is committed to continuing applied research to ensure that we are able to anticipate and address veterans’ health needs."

Media contact: Craig Clarke 0417 889 423