Population Health

Population Health Flagship

A community-wide intervention of diet, physical activity and education over five years, as well as a trial looking into the effects of health coaching on dietary change in weight loss and weight maintenance, is the major thrust of a new population health flagship project announced in March 2012.

With substantial funding and support from IHMRI’s partners, the University of Wollongong (UOW) and the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District (ISLHD), “Health Connect: A Chronic Disease Prevention Program for the Illawarra Shoalhaven Population” will deliver research data that can be translated into practice by local health care providers.

The project was selected by IHMRI’s Scientific Advisory Committee and Board of Directors following a call for expressions late last year. Two proposals were considered and assessed against selection criteria including the experience and expertise of the team, the potential for impact, scientific validity, collaboration and evidence of community partnership.

Community benefits

Health Connect not only demonstrates IHMRI’s commitment to improving the health status of Illawarra residents, but leverages well-established relationships in research, education and health service provision as well as expertise in medicine, dietetics, exercise science, public health and psychology.

According to one of the project leaders, UOW Professor Linda Tapsell, the project is the culmination of a long-standing collaboration between ISLHD and UOW researchers. “For several years clinicians and health researchers have worked at the grass-roots level of inquiry, sharing knowledge and skills in addressing key questions relating to the health of our community.

“The IHMRI flagship program provides an opportunity to consolidate these efforts into a major project that will benefit the community and showcase the capacity of this region to undertake innovative research in support of population health,” she says.

Professor Tapsell and the other project leaders, Associate Professor Vicki Flood, Associate Professor Joseph Ciarrochi, Dr Greg Peoples, Clinical Professor Jan Potter, Senior Dietitian Marianna Milosavljevic and Clinical Professor Maureen Lonergan, will spend the next few months refining the proposal and engaging specialists to design a study that will deliver results that can be directly translated into health improvements in the region.

For further information, contact: Pat Frencham, Research Development Officer, IHMRI.
P: 02 4252 8948, E: patf@uow.edu.au

More information will be provided soon.

Last reviewed: 25 February, 2014

IHMRI Research Strategy cover

Recorded seminars

Some IHMRI Seminars are recorded in our lecture theatre and published via the UOW's eduStream channel.

Select the seminar that interests you here. Recent recordings:

  • "Innovative use of technology in nutrition and dietary practice".
  • "Effectively changing health services to better respond to personality disorders".
  • "Cannabis, the brain, cognition and psychosis: the good, the bad and the unknown".