MEDIA STATEMENT - Closure of the Family Medicine Research Centre

From the Family Medicine Research Centre
University of Sydney
3 June 2016

It is with great regret that the Family Medicine Research Centre, in conjunction with the Sydney School of Public Health and the Discipline of General Practice at the University of Sydney announce the closure of the Family Medicine Research Centre on 30 June 2016.

The BEACH program conducted by the FMRC ceased data collection on 7 April 2016 after notification was received from the Department of Health that the BEACH funding agreement would not be renewed. To date, it has not been possible to find a long-term source of funding to enable the Centre to commit to the next round of data collection and ongoing BEACH analyses. As an interim measure, the University is providing funds to allow the analysis of the 2015-16 BEACH data collection by the BEACH team and the preparation of two final BEACH reports by 31 August 2016. Meanwhile the School of Public Health and the Discipline of General Practice will continue to look for ways of continuing the important work of the BEACH program. This resource is unique in its ability to inform research, policy and practice and it is of deep concern that there is currently nothing to replace it.

The University plans to maintain the BEACH databases and the interactive web server and some capacity to facilitate analytical services to academic groups and other stakeholders needing research output from the 18 years of BEACH data.

Professor Helena Britt and Associate Professor Graeme Miller will continue to supervise the use of the BEACH database in an honorary capacity.

Arrangements are also underway for the continued support of the ICPC-2 Plus terminology used in many GP EHR software systems.

Contacts for the FMRC and the BEACH team will remain the same until 31 August 2016. Subsequent contact details for BEACH analysis will be circulated before that time.

Contacts for this announcement:

Professor Helena Britt,
Director, Family Medicine Research Centre
Wk: 02 9845 8150 M: 0411197938 E:
Professor Lyndal Trevena
Head, Discipline of General Practice
Wk: 02 9351 7788 M: 0414418124 E: