In his budget speech, Chancellor Gordon Brown promised to strengthen excellence in medical research by establishing a single budget for the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Department of Health Research and Development. The Government is now seeking comments on its proposal to form this single ‘Health Research Fund’, jointly owned by the National Health Service (NHS) and MRC. The fund will have a budget of ‘at least’ £1 billion: the NHS and MRC at present have a combined budget of £1.3 billion.

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