Response to the consultation paper on the role and functions of an Australian Centre for Disease Control
The Australian Prevention Partnership Centre responds to the consultation paper's stated goal that the CDC will include within its remit the prevention of chronic disease.
- This submission was informed by 10 years of chronic disease prevention research, as well as consultations with policy partners from all state and territory jurisdictions, our scientific leadership executive, and selected representatives from our collaboration with NHMRC Centres of Research Excellence.
- The comments provided in this response focus on the stated goal that the Australia Centre for Disease Control (CDC) will include within its remit the prevention of chronic disease. In this document, we use ‘prevention’ to refer to the prevention of non-communicable chronic diseases, unless otherwise specified.
- Chronic diseases cause 9 out of every 10 preventable deaths in Australia1 and account for 85% of years lost due to ill health or early death, which justifies the CDC to have a commensurate focus and investment in prevention.
- There is wide and growing agreement that wholistic, systemic strategies are needed to address chronic disease. However, prevention research, policy and practice in Australia is fragmented and implemented through often siloed mechanisms and structures.
- There is a need for a more harmonised national prevention system that supports shared learning, avoids duplication, enables shared priority setting, and aligns funding for implementation of prevention strategies and data collection across Australia’s many, often disparate prevention functions and agencies.
- We suggest that a national agency focused on disease prevention could provide the connective tissue for this national prevention and public health vision. It could provide the necessary national coordination, strategic alignment and information sharing for effective prevention implementation and research.
- The Prevention Centre has developed a substantial evidence base in how to support an effective prevention system, and can contribute our learnings on science communication, research-policy linkages and knowledge translation.
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