12 Jul Migraine Allocated $600k in the 2020-21 Federal Budget
The 2020-21 budget announced that $600,000 will be allocated to improve the awareness and management of migraine. Migraine & Headache Australia is one of the charitable organisations receiving a portion of this funding. It is the first time in the history of our organisation that we have received government funding.
This latest effort began in early 2019 to bring together a coalition of stakeholders who are affected by migraine or work in the field. In July, 2019 Migraine & Headache Australia convened a multidisciplinary workshop with a number of patient advocates, doctors, nurses, media experts, researchers, and representatives from industry to discuss the challenges and issues to address for migraine in Australia. The outcome of this meeting was our strategic report for chronic migraine which we published here >>
The report also became the focus of our submission to government at the end of July 2019 about the urgent and pressing need to address the burden of migraine in Australia.
This is an important commitment from the Australian government for the migraine community, including people with migraine, their friends & families, medical professionals, and researchers. Budget funding for migraine is a formal recognition that this disease needs more support in Australia. This will help to decrease stigma and legitimise the issues that people with migraine face. The funding targets both the general public and professionals, which will hopefully see improved management and treatment across the board.
While migraine is incredibly common, it is frequently misdiagnosed or misunderstood. This can happen for a number of reasons, including:
- Patients thinking that their migraine is just a headache
- General practitioners don’t always have specialised knowledge about migraine and headache
- Miscommunication about the frequency and severity of migraine attacks
- Lack of awareness about the variety of medications available for migraine
Where will the money go?
The allocation of the funding is focused on educating health practitioners and patients. This will include activities like a training program for health practitioners, to help professionals diagnose and treat migraine. We will also create educational content about different types of migraine medication for patients as well as non-pharmacological management through the provision of evidence-based, clinician-reviewed information.
Unfortunately, there can be a lot of misconceptions about treating migraine. Some questions we aim to address include the types of medication available, how often you can take them, and any associated risks or side-effects. This will help patients make more informed choices, and hopefully more effectively treat migraine attacks.
Migraine & Headache Australia will be collaborating with the Australian and New Zealand Headache Society (ANZHS) to create these resources. ANZHS were also close collaboraters on the Australian strategy for chronic migraine report listed above. The ANZHS invites medical clinicians and researchers to register with them if they have an interest in headache. Their members have worked with Migraine & Headache Australia in the past for our Migraine & Headache Awareness Week seminars and as contributors in our medically reviewed website content.