Integrated Primary Health Care

The Discipline of General Practice, School of Population Health has been successful in being selected as one of several research studies nationally to be awarded funding by the Australian Primary Health Care Research Institute “Integrated Primary Health Care Centres” stream. Professor Nigel Stocks leads a collaborative team of investigators that includes Professor Esther May, University of SA, Professor Gerard Gill, Deakin University, Dr Kathryn Powell, Assoc. Professor Caroline Laurence, and Dr Paul Aylward (latter three from The University of Adelaide). The project is entitled Analysis of the supports and hindrances to the integration of co-located services in multiple models of primary health care delivery.

This research project will investigate mechanisms supporting and hindering health service integration in community and primary health, by examining different co-location models that are representative of the diversity of models operating throughout Australia. There are six participating case study sites centres that are established to provide integrated multi-disciplinary approaches to patient care; the Superclinic model, the GP Plus model, the combined GP Plus and GP Superclinic model and two private models of co-located health services (Unihealth Playford GP Superclinic, Health at Campbelltown, Modbury GP Plus Superclinic, Noarlunga GP Plus Superclinic, Adelaide Medical Solutions, and Elizabeth GP Plus Health Care Centre). Two areas of major focus are; making use of this strategically gathered information to identify what model or aspects of models works best to optimise integration in primary health care, and identifying how particular cases have developed strategies to overcome barriers. Importantly we will include patients’ response to this form of service provision. The value of this particular approach is that we consider the experience of different models when there are no prescriptive guidelines for this new primary health care approach.

The research study will be conducted over the next 18 months.

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Congratulations to the following staff who have recently been awarded grants

Prof Sandy McFarlane, CTSS – NHMRC Partnership Grant: Improving the resilience, health and wellbeing of Australian firefighters: an epidemiological study of the Metropolitan Fire Services of South Australia, $351,665

Mr Paul Rothmore, Public Health – SafeWorkSA WHS Commissioned Research Grant: Taking the next step: Operationalising a behaviour-based approach for musculoskeletal injury prevention initiatives, $32,406

Dr Sharyn Gaskin, Public Health – SafeWorkSA WHS Commissioned Research Grant: A regulatory framework for carcinogens: Development and trial of an evidence-based audit tool for cytotoxic drugs in hospitals, $95,589

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88 – Documentary: ABC1 30th January, 8.30pm

Documentary 88, goes to air tonight on ABC1 at 8.30pm.  This documentary tells the story from the 1988 bicentennial year when 30,000 Aboriginal people marched in Sydney – a day that would change the nation.

A/Prof Jenny Baker, Yaitya Purruna Indigenous Health Unit,  appears in this documentary.  You can watch the preview here More documentary information available on the Facebook page.
WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are warned that some content of this Facebook Page may contain images of deceased persons

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Casual employment is linked to women being childless by the age of 35

PhD student, Emily Steel’s second PhD paper, “Is precarious employment associated with women remaining childless until 35 years? Results from an Australian birth cohort study”, by E.J. Steele, L.C. Giles, M.J. Davies, and V.M. Moore, Human Reproduction (first published online November 19, 2013 doi:10.1093/humrep/det407), has generated buzz around the world

Women who have worked in temporary jobs are less likely to have had their first child by the age of 35, according to research published online (Wednesday 20th November, 2013) in Europe’s leading reproductive medicine journal Human Reproduction [1]. The study shows that the longer women spent in casual employment, the more likely they were to be childless when they were 35.

The researchers from the University of Adelaide found that this association between precarious employment and childlessness at 35 was irrespective of the socioeconomic status of the women.   “Our findings suggest that, regardless of their socioeconomic circumstances, women generally aspire to economic security prior to starting a family. This finding is important because it challenges the pervasive media representations of delayed childbirth as a phenomenon arising from highly educated women choosing to delay motherhood to focus on their careers,”.

The study was led by Vivienne Moore, Professor in the Discipline of Public Health, and was based on the doctoral study of Emily Steele. The researchers studied data collected from a group of Australian women who took part in the Life Journeys of Young Women Project and who were born between 1973 and 1975 in a large hospital in Adelaide. Interviews were conducted with the women in 2007-2009 when they were aged between 32-35 years old to collect information on significant events in their lives such as relationships, childbirth and employment from the age of 15 onwards. If a woman was studying full time, she was considered to be a student and employment during this period was not taken into account.

At the time of the interviews 442 of the 663 women (67%) had given birth to at least one child. At the time of their child’s birth or the study’s cut-off point, the majority were permanently employed, while 11% were in temporary employment; 225 women (about one-third) had spent no time in temporary employment; one-third had a university qualification and 75% were living with a partner.

The researchers found that the likelihood of childbirth by the age of 35 was reduced for every year spent in temporary employment. One year of causal work was associated with an 8% reduction in the likelihood of a first baby compared to women who had had no temporary jobs; the likelihood of a first baby by around age 35 was reduced by 23% after three years and by 35% after five years of temporary employment.

This effect was seen irrespective of the women’s socioeconomic status as indicated by their educational attainment, their partner’s education and also their parents’ birthplace (as the authors say that migrant families, where one or both parents were born outside Australia, might be more likely to have at least one child at a younger age than other women).

Dr Lynne Giles, co-author and senior lecturer at the university: “Our results showed that 61% of women who had received a university education had at least one casual job after achieving their first qualification, and 30% of these jobs were managerial or professional. This highlights the fact that temporary employment is no longer the sole domain of low-skilled, poorly paid people.”

“Our results also show that having children at an older age and childlessness are not just a matter of individual women’s choices. They reflect the broader structural arrangements in society. These over-arching determinants deserve more attention and study so that we can better understand the barriers to family formation.”

The paper also goes on to say that “Current policy responses generally provide financial and other support to parents after they have children; there remains a need to develop complementary policies to facilitate the ability of couples to commit to family formation.”

“Since all socioeconomic groups are implicated, we suggest that upstream labour market reforms could be considered in order to remove barriers to child-bearing.”

One of the limitations to the study was that the researchers analysed the women’s employment history, but not that of their partners. However, they did take the partner’s education into account, and they plan to investigate the employment history of both the women and the men in future work.

Although the specific results cannot be extrapolated to other countries, Prof Moore says: “The argument that women’s employment conditions have an influence on the timing of family formation would seem to be relevant, especially for Western countries with neoliberal outlook.”

Emily Steel’s PhD is supervised by Profs Vivienne Moore and Phil Ryan of Public Health and Prof Michael Davies of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.  Dr Lynne Giles advised on the statistical methods used in the research.

[1] “Is precarious employment associated with women remaining childless until 35 years? Results from an Australian birth cohort study”, by E.J. Steele, L.C. Giles, M.J. Davies, and V.M. Moore. Human Reproduction journal. doi:10.1093/humrep/det407

Human Reproduction is a monthly journal of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE), and is published by Oxford Journals, a division of Oxford University Press.

ABS-CBN News- “Temp jobs linked to childlessness for women”
The Times – “Casual jobs bad for your wealth and your family life, women told” “University of Adelaide study finds women in casual work – not career women – are less likely to be mums at 35″
Reuters- “Temp jobs linked to childlessness for women”
The Telegraph- “Casual work increases chance of being childless at 35″

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DON’T PANIC – Surviving Extremes: Catalyst, ABC1 1st December at 7.30pm

How would your family cope in a Category 3 tropical cyclone?

Or a catastrophic bushfire?

Two volunteer Australian families – two terrifying natural disasters.
In this ABC TV disaster special, two spectacularly-staged disaster scenarios will be thrown at two unsuspecting Australian families.  Are they ready?  Are you?

What would you do if a natural disaster was heading for you? Would you panic? We like to think we’d react well, but the truth is, most of us wouldn’t – for a very basic reason – our brains partially shut down, and we can react in really weird and potentially dangerous ways.

On the first day of summer ABC1′s Catalyst will broadcast a TV event where Dr Jonica Newby uncovers the links between climate change, human psychology and disastrous bushfires and cyclones.

The bushfire and cyclone disaster scenarios featured in DON’T PANIC have been created in consultation with top experts from the Bureau of Meteorology, NSW Rural Fire Service, NSW State Emergency Service, Disaster Australia, Geoscience Australia and the Floodplain Management Association.

Contributing to this discussion are:
Dr Rob Gordon, Clinical Psychologist
Prof Sandy McFarlane AO, Psychiatrist, Director of the Centre for Traumatic Stress Studies, The University of Adelaide
Ian Mannix, Head of ABC Radio Emergency Broadcasting Service
Inspector Ben Shepherd, Media Officer at NSW Rural Fire Service

ABC1, December 1st 2013, 7.30pm


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Essentials of Health Promotion Evaluation Workshop

The Cancer Prevention Research Centre, University of Queensland  is pleased to announce they will be holding a two day workshop “Essentials of Health Promotion Program Evaluation” from the 21st-22nd November 2013.

Whether you are planning to evaluate your first program or have a wealth of experience in program evaluation, this workshop will provide knowledge and skills to improve the efficiency and meaningfulness of your evaluations.

For more details please see the program flyer attached or visit the workshop page.

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Research Matters Series: Public Health Research outside the SPH

Whilst the SPH undertakes a wide range of research in public health, population health and primary health care, a number of other schools, research centres and institutes are also undertaking research in similar areas.  Throughout September, we will be presenting a special series of “Research Matters” with speakers invited from across the University and from SAHMRI.  We invite you to save the dates for these upcoming seminars.  Further details will be circulated in the next few weeks.  As usual, there will be plenty of time for questions and discussion following the presentations.

Associate Professor Anne Taylor
Head, Population Research & Outcome Studies (PROS)

Dr Anne Taylor is an Associate Professor in the Discipline of Medicine at the University of Adelaide and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Division of Health Science at the University of South Australia. She has managed the Population Research and Outcome Studies group for the past 14 years and oversees the development of state and nation-wide population surveys as well as chronic disease and other epidemiological research initiatives. She has been instrumental in establishing technical standards within Australia on issues related to computer assisted telephone interviewing (CATI) and prides herself on mentoring your professionals and students in the epidemiology and public health field. Anne has an overall H-index of 22 and has been a chief investigator on major NHMRC and ARC grants over the past five years. She has authored over 200 peer-reviewed publications, 160 departmental reports, and over 160 peer-reviewed oral presentations.

September 11th at 12.30pm
Venue:  School Seminar Room (Level 7 Terrace Towers, 178 North Terrace)


Dr Caroline Miller
Executive Officer, SAHMRI.

Dr Caroline Miller was appointed as SAHMRI’s Executive Officer In 2012. Dr Miller also leads a program of research in population health, focused on tobacco control and obesity prevention. Prior to joining SAHMRI, Dr Miller was General Manager, Cancer Control at Cancer Council SA. Caroline has qualifications in psychology, public health and economics and her PhD was awarded a University of Adelaide Doctoral Research Medal in 2011

September 17th at 12.30pm
Venue:  School Seminar Room (Level 7 Terrace Towers, 178 North Terrace)


Marco Peres, Professor of Population Oral Health
Director, Australian Research Centre for Population Oral Health (ARCPOH)

Professor Peres was appointed as the Professor of Population Oral Health and Director of the Australian Research Centre for Population Oral Health in December 2012.  Marco qualified as a dentist in 1987 (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil) and began working in Population Oral Health in 1989. He worked as a general dental practitioner in São Paulo, Brazil from 1988 to 1993. During this period he helped supervise the regional and municipal Oral Health Programs and actively participated in the main events in the Brazilian Health Reform Movement area. He has served on numerous Brazilian advisory groups including committees of the National Coordination of Oral Health, National Committee for Oral Health Surveillance and has worked as a consultant for the National Oral Health Survey carried out in 2010 and the National Household Health Survey. Together with Associate Professor Karen Peres and Dr Flavio Demarco, Marco coordinated the oral health studies of three Pelotas birth cohort studies started in 1982, 1993 and 2004 and he was the coordinator of the EPIFORIPA study, a population-based cohort study of a representative sample of adults from Florianopolis Brazil which commenced in 2009.

September 24th at 12midday
Venue:  School Seminar Room (Level 7 Terrace Towers, 178 North Terrace)

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COMPaRE-PHC scholarships available

Expressions of interest are sought for scholarshiops for a Masters degree by research on obesity management and prevention in primary health care – various possible locations

Further details

Two scholarships for Masters by Research are being offered. The scholarships can be based at any of the partner institutions; however preference will be given to applicants who wish to study with University of Queensland (working with Inala Indigenous Health Service in Brisbane) or Adelaide University. People interested in this area of research are invited to lodge an expression of interest in the first instance.  Specific areas of interest are in:

  1. Obesity prevention and management in Indigenous communities
  2. Obesity management in disadvantaged populations
  3. Implementation of guidelines for prevention and management of obesity in PHC
  4. Obesity prevention in early life.


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G-TRAC-Resthaven Grants Scheme Now Open

Resthaven Inc. has made available a new $50,000 Research Grant to be administered by the Adelaide Geriatric Training and Research with Aged Care (G-TRAC) Centre.

The aim of this research grant opportunity is to support a linkage or partnership grant application for research commencing in 2014.

The research undertaken must be benefit aged care consumers who are older people receiving either residential or community aged care services.  Priority research focuses for 2014 include but are not limited to dementia management, falls prevention, promoting functional independence or recovery, medication optimisation and pain management.

For further grant information and expression of interest:

Rosie Bonnin ph: 83132144

Applications close on 16 September 2013

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An Ethical Research Conversation

Thursday 29th August, 4.10pm
School of Population Health Seminar Room
Level 7 Terrace Towers, 178 North Terrace

Four researchers from the SPH will gather to initiate a discussion on ethical issues encountered in research, from both researcher and Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) perspectives. Topics up for discussion include:

  • HRECs – their proper role and changes over time
  • ethical sensitivity beyond ‘getting ethics approval’
  • working with vulnerable research participants
  • codes of conduct and the value of taking them seriously
  • different ethical challenges in qualitative and quantitative research

Your thoughts are most welcome on these or any other matters relating to ethical research.
The panellists will draw on examples from their own experiences of research and ethics committee membership to illustrate some of these issues.

As usual, there will be plenty of time for questions and discussion following the presentations.


Dr Drew Carter

Drew has long had an interest in philosophy and ethics, with both his undergraduate and doctorate studies focussing in these areas. Drew is a currently an investigator on the five-year NHMRC Capacity Building Grant: Health care in the round: building capacity for integrated decision-making for improving health services. In 2012 he became a chief investigator on the ANPHA funded project: Steward or nanny state: Consulting the public about the use of regulations and laws to address childhood obesity. In 2012, he undertook a residency in Geneva, where he led an ongoing research project, ‘The morality of using acute pain as a diagnostic tool in emergency medicine, together with a critical history of acute pain measurement‘.

Dr Shona Crabb

Shona’s research interests are primarily in the area of qualitative and critical health psychology. In particular, she has a strong interest in issues related to risk, prevention and public understandings of science. She is also particularly interested in gendered health issues. She is currently the Deputy Postgraduate Coordinator in the SPH and she co-ordinates a number of courses in the Bachelor of Health Sciences. Shona currently sits on the Women’s and Children’s Health Network (WCHN) Human Research Ethics Committee.

Dr Jaklin Eliott

Jaklin is a Senior Lecturer and Program Coordinator for the Masters of Counselling and Psychotherapy, and a lead investigator on the ARC-funded “Alcohol causes Cancer!” project. Her research interests focus on the social and moral implications of how people talk or write about healthcare decisions, particularly in the context of cancer or palliative care. Jaklin currently sits on the SA Health Ethics Committee.

Dr Vicki Xafis

Vicki is a post doctoral researcher in the Perinatal Ethics Unit in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and the Project Manager of the HealthyLaws Study in the Discipline of Public Health. She is a qualitative researcher and is a Chief Investigator on a project relating to end-of-life decision-making for parents of seriously ill children. Her post-graduate and doctoral studies focused on ethics and law and she has an interest in research ethics, medical ethics, and law. Vicki served on the Monash University Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) and the Monash University HREC Management Committee. She was Human Ethics Officer at Monash University, Executive Officer Human Research Ethics at Deakin University and the Department of Human Services (Victoria). Vicki has provided research ethics training to researchers and HREC Committee Members.

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