Clinical Trial Data Unlocked for Research with New National Platform

17 Jul 2023
Clinical Trial Data Unlocked for Research with New National Platform

For the first time in Australia, researchers can find clinical trial data from multiple research institutions and request access to it via a new platform, Health Data Australia.

Launching tomorrow at SAHMRI in Adelaide, Health Data Australia allows clinical trialists and data custodians to share clinical trial data according to standards designed by the Australian clinical trials community and fulfil data sharing requirements that come with public funding. 

The platform can subsequently be used by researchers who were not involved in the clinical trials to find and request access to this data.

The framework for sharing clinical trial data through Health Data Australia was co-designed by the Australian Research Data Commons (ARDC) and experts and representatives for the 9 nodes of the Health Studies Australia National Data Asset (HeSANDA) network, which covers 72 health research organisations, health service operators and clinical trial networks from across Australia. More than 90 people took part in working groups, incorporating feedback from research trial participants, consumers, researchers and trial organisers.

Health Research Data Without Borders

Health research studies in Australia produce huge amounts of data that contains information about research participants, their health and their response to the interventions being studied.

Data collected in one study can be extremely valuable to other studies. However, patient privacy requirements and the naturally siloed approaches of research groups and state jurisdictions have made it hard to share data.

In partnership with the health research community, the ARDC has played a critical role in synchronising efforts, aligning approaches and building national data capability through the HeSANDA program.

Dr Adrian Burton, Director, People Research Data Commons and Deputy CEO of the ARDC said, “Health Data Australia is set to bring immense value to health research, maximising the impact of past research and laying a foundation for future research to improve the health outcomes for Australia. We thank our many partners and advisors of this unprecedented project, who shared their considerable expertise to co-design the national platform.”

Professor Steve Wesselingh, SAHMRI Executive Director and Research Director for Health Translation SA, who drives the South Australian HeSANDA node, said “SAHMRI is really pleased to host the launch of the HeSANDA infrastructure platform Health Data Australia. SAHMRI has been working with the South Australian state-wide HeSANDA node to include SAHMRI trials in the development phase of this project. It is great to see it come to life across Australia supporting data sharing of investigator initiated, publicly funded clinical trial health data to reduce research waste. I look forward to continuing to promote the sharing of research for secondary use and I will observe with interest as the next stages of the HeSANDA project unfold.”

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