MRCG/HRB Joint Funding Scheme 2018

 MRCG / Irish Cancer Society / HRB  

Research call: Inter-disciplinary and/or inter-institutional research into the role of prehabilitation and/or rehabilitation in cancer care
Application deadline: Tuesday, 16 January 2018, 15:00 GMT


The Irish Cancer Society is a member of the Medical Research Charities Group (MRCG), which was founded in 1998 with the aim of supporting charities in Ireland to increase both the quality and quantity of healthcare research being done in Ireland. The MRCG represents the joint interests of charities specialising in restoring health through medical research, diagnosis and treatment and, where possible, the prevention of disease.

Since 2006, the work of the MRCG has been supported by the Department of Health through annual funding to the Health Research Board (HRB) for the co-funding of research projects with medical research charities. The HRB is the lead agency in Ireland supporting research linked to health and social care. Together the MRCG and the HRB operate an innovative joint funding scheme that allows members of the MRCG to to support research of particular interest to specific patient populations, where they might otherwise not be in a position to finance the full cost of that research.

How the MRCH/HRB Joint Funding Scheme works

Please visit the MRCH website for a detailed description of the MRCG/HRB Joint Funding scheme application, external peer review and award process.


There is a growing body of scientific evidence that supports prehabilitation (therapeutic intervention which occurs between the time of cancer diagnosis and the beginning of acute treatment) and rehabilitation (therapeutic intervention both during and after treatment) in the optimization of physical fitness, treatment tolerance, recovery, and survival in cancer patients.

More research is urgently needed to evaluate the most effective prehabilitation and rehabilitation interventions, and combinations thereof, for people living with and beyond cancer. However, these areas of cancer care are currently under funded in the Irish context.

In an effort to build capacity in this area, the Irish Cancer Society, as part of the MRCG/HRB Joint Funding scheme 2018, is inviting applications to support inter-disciplinary and/or inter-institutional research into the role of prehabilitation and/or rehabilitation in cancer care.

Purpose of the call

The purpose of this grant call is to support excellent collaborative research into the role of prehabilitation and/or rehabilitation in cancer care.

We anticipate a focus in the areas of lifestyle, diet and exercise interventions to improve outcome and overall survival for those living with and beyond cancer. 

Applications are sought from clinicians, allied health care professionals and scientists already established in the field of prehabilitation and/or rehabilitation research. Research fields include, but are not limited to, biological research, occupational therapy, diet and nutrition, exercise, medical oncology and psycho-oncology. It is open to research professions including, but not limited to, research scientists, medical doctors, physiotherapists, psychiatrists, occupational therapists, nurses, pharmacists and psychologists.

The research programme outlined in response to this grant call should be of a high calibre and provide robust data as to the efficacy of the approaches being evaluated. Applications are invited for research proposals that are inter-disciplinary and/or inter-institutional. They should consider, adapt, evaluate and implement effective strategies that will provide long-term benefit for cancer care in the Irish healthcare system.


The MRCG/HRB Joint Funding scheme 2018 provides funding for clearly defined research projects in disease areas of strategic relevance to each individual charity. MRCG/HRB awards are up to a maximum total award value of €285,000 for projects from 12 up to 36 months.


All applications must be submitted by email to by Tuesday, 16 January 2018, 15:00 GMT.


Please download and carefully read the application documentation below in advance of queries and submission:

Download all files

Key dates

Call Open November 2017
Deadline for applications Tuesday, 16 January 2017
Irish Cancer Society external peer review January-March 2017
Right-to Reply Phase March 2018
HRB Application Deadline 9 April 2018
Joint Funding Committee Meeting Early June 2018
HRB Board Meeting June 2018
Applicant Notification July 2018
Contracts Issued From August 2018
Research Project Start Date From September 2018


A link to view a webinar to view the Irish Cancer Society MRCG/HRB Joint Funding Scheme 2018 will be available soon.

Please note

This year the Irish Cancer Society is offering to all applicants an equal amount of assistance with the composition of the following sections of the application:

  • 2.1 Project Lay Summary
  • 2.4 Relevance of research to strategic aims of the charity or charities
  • 2.5e Public Involvement in the Research Project

Therefore please feel free to send draft copies of sections for review to the Irish Cancer Society ( in advance of the 16th of January deadline for applications.

Contact details

All enquiries & correspondence relating to this scheme should be addressed to:

Dr Hazel McCarthy
Irish Cancer Society
43/45 Northumberland Road, Dublin 4
Tel: +353-1-2310-583

Date Last Reviewed: 
Friday, December 15, 2017