October news about Epidemiology for Policy and Practice

4 October 2017

Welcome to new members of the EPP group:

o   Shavaun Wells – Shavaun will be working on the FaCtS Study within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health program.

o   Muhammad Shahdaat Bin Sayeed – Shahdaat is a PhD candidate, who is supervised by Rosemary Korda.

 Emily Banks was awarded a Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning by the Australian Government. This award recognises Emily’s team and systems-based approach to supervision.

 Ray Lovett featured in the newest edition of the ANU reporter regarding the Mayi Kuwayu Study. Please see: https://reporter.anu.edu.au/how-health-linked-aboriginal-culture

  Emily Banks featured in a short film about STEMM talent gain and loss. Diverse individuals were asked about why they decided to give their unique talents to STEMM, some obstacles they faced that made them almost turn away from STEMM, and importantly, how these obstacles were overcome so that they continue to give their talents to STEMM today. Please see: https://youtu.be/97sOVlej_og

Jenny Welsh and Ellie Paige's article for The Conversation titled “No, depression won’t literally break your heart (but have a heart check anyway)” received a lot of interest, including from the media. Jenny also gave an interview with a Sydney local radio station.

Rosemary Korda presented at the Australasian Epidemiological Association (AEA) conference in Sydney on 29 Sep on "Residential asbestos insulation and cancer risks: a whole-of-population cohort study". The paper on this study has also been accepted for publication in The Lancet Public Health.

  Emily Banks visited Oxford University as part of her role as a visiting professor.

As a steering committee member, Grace will be attending the WIMSIG Conference 2017: Celebration of Women in Australian Mathematical Sciences which will be held in Adelaide 24-26 Sep 2017.  This is Australia's first research conference showcasing the research of women in the mathematical sciences.  In addition to research talks, panel discussions on gender equity will offer participants a national and international context. There will also be a professional development workshop, focusing on issues important for female high achievers in the mathematical sciences.

   Robyn Lucas, Ellie Paige, Minnie Salmon and Jane Desborough were involved in preparing for a Grand Challenge interview on personalised health (“Your Health in Your Hands”).

 Kamalini Lokuge, Emily Banks, Robyn Lucas, Jill Guthrie, Victoria Hovane, Katherine Thurber, Grace Joshy, Cathy Day, Ray Lovett, Chatu Yapa, Polly Wallace, Sally Cater, Kai Hodgkin and other NCEPH affiliates were involved in the ANU Grand Challenges Scheme. Their project was titled “Humanitarian health research and implementation to improve health and health services for the most disadvantaged in the Asia-Pacific region”. 

 Ray Lovett travelled to Wadeye, Northern Territory to conduct a focus group as part of the Mayi Kuwayu Study.

Katie Thurber (on behalf of Ray Lovett) participated in a Roundtable discussion Better Indigenous policy: Data access and availability to support decision making, co-hosted by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research.

Jan Chapman travelled to Alice Springs to conduct a series of pilot surveys with community for the Mayi Kuwayu Study, in conjunction with Tangentyere Aboriginal Council.

 Susan Pennings presented a paper called 'Measuring the value of health care: QALY and DALY methodology' at the Effective Altruism Australia Conference at the University of Sydney on 24 September. The conference was interdisciplinary, and focused on how scientific evidence can inform the best way to make a positive contribution to society.

   Jason Agostino, Jenny Welsh, Cathy Day, Sue Trevenar and Amanda Daluwatta assisted in the third and final Absolute Risk Workshop for GP and practice nurses on 5 Sep.

 Ray Lovett is currently in Canada on a two-week trip presenting on data governance.

 Jenny Welsh attended Advanced Epidemiology training, which is conducted by John Lynch and Tony Blakey as a pre course to the Australasian Epidemiological Association (AEA) conference. 

Alice Richardson, Ellie Paige, Grace Joshy, Cathy Day, Cate D’Este and Emily Banks taught in the MPhil (App Epid) course block.

 Ray Lovett, Katie Thurber, and Ellie Paige led a workshop for the Contemporary issues in Public Health course.

 Jenny Welsh attended a course run by the Sax Institute on Building Successful Partnerships for Policy Relevant Research. The 3-day course covered topics such as plain language communication, building and maintaining relationships, and understanding the policy context.

  Bianca Calabria attended a pre-conference workshop for the International Evaluation Conference. The workshop was on “Realist methods for evaluation of large scale and complex programs”.

  Shavaun Wells and Minnie Salmon started on the FaCtS Study this month.

Congratulations to Lachie Russell and his partner Sammy on the birth of their baby boy Josh, who was born on 5 Sep.


Published Papers:

o             Welsh, J., Korda, R.J., Joshy, G., Butterworth, P., Brown, A. & Banks, E. Psychological distress and ischaemic heart disease: cause or consequence? Evidence from a large prospective cohort study. J Epidemiol Community Health Published Online First: 19 September 2017. doi: 10.1136/jech-2017-209535