Professor Marion Haas – 2019 Distinguished Investigator (Life-Time Achievement)

Marion’s career has been committed to the application of health services research, particularly economic analysis to improve health policy and health services delivery. She has worked across a wide range of topic areas, including screening, health promotion, planning and program budgeting, telehealth, patient experiences of health care, patient choice and of course physiotherapy.   She has been at the forefront of adopting new methods in health services research; for example,  the use of discrete choice survey methods exploring how doctor recommendations and patient preferences interact. She is currently a chief investigator on a number of major NHMRC grants, including a CRE in Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health (SPHERE).

Between 2010 and 2017, Marion was one of the leaders of the Cancer Research Economics Research Team (CREST) at CHERE. She has published over 100 peer-reviewed papers, many in leading journals such as JAMA, Social Science and Medicine, Health Economics, Pharmacoeconomics, Health Policy and Value in Health. What is impressive in Marion’s publication list is the extent of her collaborations which include clinical collaborators, other health services researchers and younger researchers to whom she is acting as a mentor. This makes her a truly exemplary role model in health services research.

Marion’s commitment to rigorous research and her ability to mentor and support others was recognised by the UTS Business School appointment as Research professor. In this role, she is responsible for supporting research, particularly early and mid-career researchers, across the Business School. She has established a mentoring program for women researchers in the UTS Business School. Her supervision track record is exemplary, and Marion has been very supportive of opportunities and development of her PhD students.  This is exemplified by their research and career success. In addition, Marion has been instrumental in the development and fostering of the careers of many researchers in health economics and health services research, both at CHERE and more widely in the field, through her support, mentoring and advice. Marion was a finalist in the Vice-Chancellor’s Awards for Research Excellence in the category of Researcher Development in 2015.

Marion’s engagement with policy is demonstrated by the leading role she has played in commissioned research, with projects for the NSW Ministry of Health, the Australian Department of Health, NSW Treasury, NSW Community Services, NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research.

Marion’s commitment to and support for this Association, particularly in its formation and early leadership has been recognised by her appointment as an honorary life member of the Health Services Research Association of Australia and New Zealand. She was one of its founding members and served as its Vice-president until 2009. She helped ensure the stability of the Association, in particular finding the funding to support the recruitment of a part-time executive officer. She contributed to the organisation of the early conferences, which are now a regular and anticipated feature of the Australian and New Zealand conference calendar. Marion is a strong advocate for health services research at every opportunity.

Overall, Marion has achieved excellence in her field of research and made a major contribution to the growth and recognition of health services research in Australia. She has had a demonstrable impact on policy, on health service delivery and has in all of her activities found opportunities to mentor and support other researchers.  She is exceptionally deserving of this award.