The impact of recent bush-fires on Australian communities

The Australian Government is investing $5 million via the Medical Research Future Fund in 9 research projects investigating the physical and mental health effects of the recent bush-fires on Australians and their communities.

The Government is taking a proactive approach to understand the potential medical and affected communities under two major research streams:

  • Researchers will study the physiological impacts of prolonged bush-fire smoke exposure.

  • They will investigate and the mental health impacts of bush-fires on affected communities.

University of New South Wales Professor Raina MacIntyre and her team will run a randomized controlled trial to determine the impact of mask use on respiratory outcomes during the bush-fire season. These will help Australia remains at the forefront of preparedness and recovery in the event of natural disasters, including bush-fires.

The Government acknowledges the significant impact of COVID-19 on the health and medical research sector, which is critical for longer term health outcomes, jobs and economic growth.

In addition, the Government has invested over $36 million in research for COVID-19, including on diagnostics, vaccines, antivirals, respiratory medicine clinical trials, and for evidence based guidelines.


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