Monday, 5 December 2016

SPHPM researchers announced successful recipients of the Heart Foundation’s 2017 Fellowships

Today the National Heart Foundation of Australia announced the successful applicants for its 2017 research funding round and numerous SPHPM researchers are deservedly in the mix. A total of $16.9 million involving 90 awards were offered to the Australia’s best and brightest engaged in investigating the causes, treatment and prevention of heart disease and related disorders. SPHPM’s Dr Janet Bray and Dr Carol Hodgson have both received Future Leader Fellowships to further their innovative cardiovascular research.

Dr Bray’s research project aims to improve outcomes for Australian cardiovascular patients through improving access to acute treatments and advancing the evidence-base in emergency care. Cardiovascular events are time critical conditions affecting one-in-five Australians, and are a major cause of disability and death.Dr Bray said that specialty emergency treatments can reduce the damage to the heart and brain but time-to-treatment is crucial.

“Many patients do not receive these treatments or receive them at a time when their effectiveness is reduced, so understanding and evaluating strategies to improve access to these treatments is a health care priority,” Dr Bray said.

Dr Hodgson’s project involves developing and testing novel, multidisciplinary treatment strategies to minimise the impact of the both the initial cardiac event and the risks to recovery within the ICU environment.

“My hypothesis is that novel interventions delivered early during the ICU stay will optimise long-term patient outcomes. In my research I will measure the physical, psychological, cognitive and financial burden of survival on patients surviving acute heart failure and the impact on the Australian healthcare system,” Dr Hodgson said.

Professor John McNeil, Head of SPHPM, extended a big congratulations to Dr Bray and Dr Hodgson: “These fellowships are an important win for cardiovascular research, allowing you to further your invaluable work on such a significant public health matter – your commitment and achievements are an asset to the School.”

“Heart disease remains the single biggest killer of all Australians and for the first time since 2008 the mortality rate has risen. Heart disease was also an associated cause of death for a further 16,000 Australians in 2014. The problem of heart disease is far from ‘solved’, although research such as that funded by these grants will help make significant inroads,” Adjunct Professor John Kelly (AM), Heart Foundation National CEO said. 

Dr Bray is the Associate Director of Australian Resuscitation Outcomes Consortium (Aus-ROC) and Dr Hodgson is the Deputy Director of the Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Research Centre (ANZIC-RC) both housed in SPHPM.

Coverage of other successful SPHPM researchers will be in the blog in the coming days.

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