The Australia & New Zealand Musculoskeletal (ANZMUSC) Clinical Trials Network is a newly established international, multidisciplinary collaborative clinical trials network composed of clinicians, consumer groups, consumer representatives, policy makers, professional associations and funders with an interest in investigator-initiated clinical trials focusing on musculoskeletal conditions.
Plans for the ANZMUSC Clinical Trials Network began in 2014 with the formation of a small steering group and in April 2015 the steering group organised the groups’ inaugural summit in Melbourne. During the 2 day summit, over 100 attendees including clinical-researchers across a range of disciplines (physiotherapy, rheumatology, orthopaedics, health economics, biostatistics, pharmacy, geriatrics etc), clinicians, consumer representatives, policy-makers and funders came together and agreed on the vision, mission, values and 1st year goals of the group as critical first steps towards the establishment of the network.
Since then we have held annual scientific meetings around Australia to bring together researchers, clinicians, consumers, professional associations, consumer organisations, health insurance agencies and policy makers interested in improving muscluoskeletal health. We have expanded our network to nearly 300 individual members including 7 consumers who make up our consumer advisory committee. In 2018 we were awarded an NHMRC Centre For Research Excellence and we have now endorsed 8 clinical trials. We are also in the process of developing a multi-attribute priority setting tool to develop a dynamic research priority list for the network and are working on research projects including living systematic reviews and guidelines for knee OA and working to implement the Clinical Care Standards for hip fracture and knee osteoarthritis into routine clinical care.
We have published a paper on our development to date as a guide for other groups considering developing a network.