Monash Partners becomes node of national research data sharing initiative

Monash Partners has become part of a national initiative to support the sharing and reuse of health research data in ways that bring value to the research community, increase the efficiency of research, and provide benefits for the health of Australia’s population.

Monash Partners along with Monash University were successful in their application to become one of nine Infrastructure Development nodes of the Health Studies Australian National Data Asset (HeSANDA) network. The nine nodes cover 72 health research organisations in Australia, including 18 universities, ten medical research institutes, 19 health service operators, 16 clinical trial networks, and nine other organisations.

HeSANDA seeks to increase research impact and integrity by supporting activities like new research, meta-analysis, and clinical guideline development.

By creating a national asset from the data outputs of health research projects, the network hopes to maximise the investment into health research by schemes such as the NHMRC Clinical Trials and Cohort Studies program.

The HeSANDA initiative is the result of a series of consultation workshops run by the Australian Research Data Commons (ARDC), with assistance from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Australian Clinical Trials Alliance, clinical trialists and researchers, health consumers, research institutions, and infrastructure providers and policy makers involved in clinical trials research.

The workshops helped to build consensus around the purpose, content, and requirements for a national health data asset to be created through the HeSANDA initiative.

Following the initial consultations, the ARDC released an open call for clusters of research organisations to develop the initial set of infrastructure nodes in the HeSANDA network. Monash Partners and Monash University’s application was led by Professor Helena Teede from Monash Partners and Anitha Kannan from Monash University and included groups from across both organisations interested in contributing to the development of the national infrastructure.

Over the next two years, the ARDC will facilitate the co-design approach for the design and delivery of the national data asset.

The Design Phase (July – November 2021) will establish four working groups (Information Design, Data Access, Ethics & Consent, and Technology) with a representative from each node to establish coherent data practices, models and frameworks for each respective working group area.

The Development Phase (December 2021 – December 2022) will establish the Coordinated Data Services at each node, a network of nodes to supply nominated clinical trials metadata according to the coherent data practices.

The Test & Deployment Phase (Jan 2023 – Jun 2023) will test and deploy a federation service to ensure the compatibility of the node network. This phase will also deliver a set of infrastructure governance policies and procedures.

For further information on HeSANDA, click here