Pharmacy researchers score NHMRC grants

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Top researchers have gained a funding boost to look into medicines, deprescribing and opioid-related harms

Amy Page
Dr Amy Page

Several pharmacy and medicines researchers have been awarded fellowships and grants in the recent National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grant period.

Dr Amy Page, a teaching associate at Monash University’s Centre for Medicine Use and Safety (CMUS), has received an Early Career Fellowship to investigate the clinical effects of continuing and withdrawing medicines in older people.

Her research aims to identify desirable clinical outcomes for older people with unplanned medicine-related hospital admissions for suspected adverse drug-related events, including falls and bleeding events.

Ms Page was named Australian Young Pharmacist of the Year in 2015.

Monash University’s Dr Janet Sluggett, a Research Fellow at CMUS, has also received an Early Career Fellowships to look into lowering risk and improving safety of medicines use in older Australians receiving community and residential aged care services.

Dr Janet Sluggett. Photo: Supplied.
Dr Janet Sluggett. Photo: Supplied.

Her research aims to develop strategies for clinicians, aged care providers and policy makers in recognising and responding to major clinical risks, contributed by medicine-related hospitalisations, in Australian residential aged care facilities.

She was also recently awarded an Endeavour Research Fellowship to undertake pharmacoepidemiologial research in San Diego, California.

Dr Renly Lim, a Research Fellow at the University of South Australia’s Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, has received an Early Career Fellowship to explore medicine-induced deterioration in older people.

Her research aims to use digital tools to detect the minor side effects and to test a novel pharmacist service to prevent them, with the potential to avoid subsequent adverse events such as falls and hospitalisations.

Suzanne Nielsen
Associate Professor Suzanne Nielsen

Associate Professor Suzanne Nielsen, from Monash University’s Eastern Health Clinical School and the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) at UNSW, has received nearly half a million dollars towards implementation research to treat and prevent opioid-related harms.

There is a lack of studies that test the implementation of strategies to reduce opioid prescribing and related mortality, and her research aims to address this gap by implementation studies of scalable interventions designed for use in pharmacy and primary care settings.

Dr Andrea Schaffer, a biostatistician and epidemiologist from UNSW, has received an Early Career Fellowship towards evaluating population-level medicine policy interventions.

Her project will look into the intended and unintended consequences of a range of medicine policies in Australia, using linked population health data.

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