The NHMRC-National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaborative Research Grants scheme supports Australian participation and collaboration in leading international collaborative research through the United Kingdom’s NIHR Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme. The HTA Programme funds independent research about the effectiveness, costs and broader impact of healthcare treatments and tests.

Programme Description

The NIHR HTA Programme invites applications in response to calls for research on specific topics. Funding is for up to five years. NHMRC is providing up to $3 million to support the Australian components of successful projects over three rounds. Round 1 will address the following research topics:

•    21/18 Lumbar fusion for low back pain
•    21/19 Low energy contact X-ray brachytherapy (Papillon technique) or local excision for people with early stage rectal cancer where major surgery is not planned
•    21/20 Lipid-modifying therapy in children with familial hypercholesterolaemia
•    21/21 Percutaneous thermal ablation for benign thyroid nodules
•    21/22 Stretching programme for ambulant children with cerebral palsy
•    21/23 Strengthening programme for ambulant adolescents with cerebral palsy
•    21/25 Use of biologic drugs around the time of orthopaedic surgery
•    21/26 Microsuction compared with irrigation to remove earwax
•    21/27 Endoscopic versus open surgery for the treatment of cubital tunnel syndrome
•    21/28 Maintenance therapy for lichen sclerosus
•    21/29 Maintenance treatment for bipolar disorder
•    21/30 Non-conservative treatments for major low anterior resection syndrome (LARS)

Further information on the NIHR HTA commissioned research topics is available on the NIHR website.

Application Process

•    NIHR invites Stage 1 submissions against advertised research topics
•    NIHR and NHMRC invite successful Stage 1 applicants to submit a Stage 2 application. NHMRC invites successful Australian-based researchers to apply to NHMRC for support of the Australian components of the research by submitting an application in Sapphire
•    NIHR conducts peer review of all Stage 2 applications submitted
•    NIHR advises NHMRC of Stage 2 applications deemed fundable by the NIHR
•    NHMRC conducts eligibility checks for the eligible Australian collaborations
•    NHMRC reviews the budget requested for the Australian components of eligible collaborations
•    Funding recommendations approval process.


The NHMRC-NIHR scheme has eligibility criteria and applications will be excluded from consideration if eligibility requirements are not met:

•    The Chief Investigator A (CIA) and their Administering Institution must be named as the Australian Partner Investigator on an application submitted to the NIHR
•    The application must have been shortlisted based on scientific peer review by NIHR in order to be considered for funding by NHMRC
•    Other Australian researchers listed on the NIHR application must be identified as CIs in the application to NHMRC
•    Australian applicants must provide the Australian budget details on the NHMRC-NIHR Scheme application form (in Sapphire)

The Australian applicants must be successful through the NIHR HTA process to be eligible to receive funding from NHMRC.

Grant at a glance

Duration of funding
Up to five years
Level of funding

Outcomes of funding rounds