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NHMRC Early Career Fellowships granted to CRE researchers Dr Caryn West and Dr Sandra Campbell

Congratulations to Dr Caryn West and Dr Sandra Campbell who have been awarded an NHMRC Early Career Fellowship.

Dr Caryn West

Resilience in individuals and families coping with the impacts of alcohol related injuries in remote Indigenous communities: a program of mixed method research

Indicative Funding: $304,596 over 4 years

Alcohol Management Plans (AMPs), primarily to control alcohol availability, were first implemented by the Queensland Government a decade ago (2002-03). The new Queensland Government currently has AMPs under review, bringing the prospect that alcohol may become readily available once more in some communities. Initially, from 2002-03, AMPs seemed to have a number of positive effects on injury rates related to alcohol use, however the results varied across communities. As a paucity of rigorous data to fully describe positive changes in injury rates linked with Queensland’s controversial AMPs is available, it is important that in-depth studies of alcohol and injury in these communities be conducted. When injury and illness occur, individuals, families, communities and healthcare systems are also impacted. As yet there has been no research that explores the impact of alcohol related injuries in relation to individual, family and community resilience in Indigenous Australians. Revealing how some individuals and families survive and thrive, new ways of working with families who need support may be identified and adopted. For individuals, families and communities, this project gives voice to the impact of alcohol-related injuries and also identifies the strengths used when faced with this situation. This proposed mixed method research program aims to describe and categorise injuries in four remote Indigenous communities in Cape York, far north Queensland. With a focus on alcohol-related injuries the research will explore, in detail, the long-term impact of this kind of injury on individuals, families and communities in order to better understand resilience strategies that have helped to minimise alcohol’s negative effects

Chief Investigator: Dr Caryn West (CRE Fellow)

Dr Sandra Campbell

Improving pre-pregnancy health and pregnancy outcomes in north Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

Indicative Funding: $306,596 over 4 years

The key aim of this research program is to identify opportunities and time-points for effective primary, secondary and tertiary interventions to improve health in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women of childbearing age and their infants in north Queensland communities. The program will seek to establish sustainable processes to conduct surveillance and epidemiological research to determine protective maternal characteristics, and to monitor the impact of potentially preventable risk conditions on pregnancy and birth outcomes. An additional component of the program is to rigorously evaluate outcomes of complex interventions restricting the supply of alcohol in Cape York which may have powerful short and long-term impacts on the health of women of childbearing age and their infants.