The Health Research Board’s new strategy ‘Health Research – Making an Impact’ sets out a clear direction for health and social care research over the next five years, taking into account the fact that people and patients must be central to the research process.

Dr Mairéad O’Driscoll, Chief Executive at the HRB, believes involving people in the work undertaken and funded by the Board, leads to improved research, outcomes and lives. “The pandemic has highlighted that while our health system depends on the economy, without a well-functioning health and research system, economies can quickly grind to a halt.

“This means we must consider health research as a long-term investment, positioning us to tackle health challenges and informing us how to prevent illness and improve people’s care,” she added.

Health research is needed to tackle health challenges and help to prevent illness and improve people’s care – Dr Mairéad O’Driscoll, HRB Chief Executive.

“Over the next five years, the HRB will invest in high-quality health and social care research that has real value and impact – research that shapes policy and practice; research that delivers value for society and the economy; and, most importantly, research that puts people at the centre, improving their health as well as the care they receive.”

The Health Research Board’s strategy also stresses the importance of international research partnerships. “Many of the health challenges we face are global and the HRB is committed to fostering and enhancing European and international coordination, collaboration and engagement in health research, as well as providing continuous support to the Irish health research community to compete in EU funding programmes,” noted Dr O’Driscoll.