Here's what's been happening at HTSA this month

September Newsletter 2022
Accelerating the translation of Research findings into Action to ensure scientific evidence can positively Impact the health of South Australians.
I recently received some feedback from a colleague in the US, and some of his comments particularly resonated:

‘your model seems to have found a way to cut through the bureaucracy and red tape … you are affecting outcomes using influence rather than mandates’

This in a nutshell is HTSA’s mission- we are always oriented toward outcomes through translating research into practice, and particularly the impact of that outcome for consumers. There are some great examples of that in this month’s edition of our newsletter .

On August 31st, we launched the South Australian Chapter of the Women’s Health Research Translation Network. I left the event feeling inspired- not only by the high calibre presentations and their insights, particularly from clinicians researchers who work to embed research in their work to benefit their patients, but also by what this network can accomplish looking forward. There are 9 key priority areas that this network will focus on, and I encourage you if you aren’t already involved to consider joining the SA WHRTN.

The Health Translation SA Board meeting on September 14th was a great chance for our 11 partners to come together to discuss  our projects and focus areas for 2022. I’d like to thank board member and NALHN CEO Maree Geraghty for hosting us at Modbury Hospital. It was invaluable to have the board meeting in a health service, and thank you to NALHN Executive Director of Medical Services , John Maddison and NALHN Digital Health lead, Arindam Chaudhuri, for their presentations about key NALHN research related activities. The board found the information highly relevant and interesting.

The HTSA team is preparing for a big week next week at the SALHN Research Week. I will be leading a panel session focussing on Health Services Research and the MRFF on Tuesday 27th, and the broader HTSA team will also be present for networking opportunities. We’re also excited to be launching a new clinical research  training platform, VCTEC, on Friday, which you can read more about in this month’s edition.

I’ll be finishing the month in Sydney at the National Indigenous Research(er) Capacity Building Network (IRNet) Research Showcase, which is an important event for the Indigenous health and medical research community. With some 360 people signed up to come together for the event at Sydney University we are confident this will boost the strong relationships that were maintained virtually during COVID.

And finally, keep an eye out for our next Spotlight Series beginning next month. The focus of this series will be consumer engagement, which is a key ingredient to delivering outcomes. Full details are in this month’s newsletter.

Wendy Keech
CEO, Health Translation SA

MRFF project delivering better aged care through mental health support

It is one of the chronically neglected fields in mental health research, but now, thanks to funding from the NHMRC and the Medical Research Future Fund, Senior Research Fellow at Flinders University Dr Monica Cations is embarking on wide-ranging research to examine the mental health of older Australians and their access to services and support.

Dr Cations’ NHMRC/MRFF Emerging Leadership Investigator Grant sees her focus particularly on people over 65 years who are living in residential aged care but has implications for older people ageing in place and accessing services in their homes. 

“At a very broad level, for many people the process of ageing involves losing control over some of their decision making and their choices, and that can be confronting and lead to anxiety or depression, exacerbate existing mental health conditions, or trigger past traumas,” Dr Cations says.

“In my research I want at first to understand the prevalence of mental ill-health for older Australians and then consider what the barriers are to receiving Medicare-funded mental health services, especially for people living in residential aged care.”

Being awarded an MRFF/NHMRC Emerging Leadership Fellowship recognises the importance of the kind of translational research being undertaken by Dr Cations.

Researchers and teams wanting to learn more about the support available to apply for MRFF funding should contact their institutional MRFF Support Lead or HTSA via the SA MRFF Working Group page on the HTSA website.

Read the full story via our website here.

Photo: Dr Monica Cations

Women's Health Research Translation Network launches in SA 

On August 31st, a sold out SAHMRI auditorium sat together with one shared goal; to create change for the women of South Australia.

Developed as part of a national initiative led by AHRA, Health Translation SA officially launched the South Australian chapter of the Women's Health Research Translation Network after a successful debut event.

Special guest speaker, MP Louise Miller-Frost said that the work of the network would be vital in making an impact for women across the state. 

'This is a really great opportunity for us to take steps forward in terms of women's experience of health, women's issues health.. but also women as professionals and researchers' said Ms Miller-Frost. 

The packed program featured presentations from a diverse range of speakers including academics, clinicians & politicians, and also contained perspectives from various cultural backgrounds and career journeys.

Attendees listened to topics such as current challenges and barriers, strategies to bring academics and clinicians together, and key ingredients to driving successful research translation.

The formal portion of the evening concluded with a panel discussion focused on the network’s future, with invited guests sharing insightful commentary on what needs to change to increase success for women's researchers.  

Health translation SA's CEO, Wendy Keech, closed the event with a motivating look forward, and shared the nine priority areas that will inform the network's focus. 

'We're here to support each other, to work forward and to make change' said Ms Keech. 

'These things don't happen if we don't invest in people to make them happen.' 

To learn more about WHRTN, download the flyer, join the mailing list, or view the launch event presentations. 

Photo: Attendees networking at the SA WHRTN Launch event 

New clinical trials education centre for South Australia

Online education and training platform for anyone involved in clinical trials
  • Free for all South Australians
  • Courses which are interactive, practical, multi-modal, evidence based
  • Networking opportunities for the clinical trials workforce
 Keen to know more?
  • Hear from us at the SAHLN Research Week September 26-30th
V-CTEC has been brought to South Australia thanks to the SA/NT Regional Clinical Trial Coordinating Centre and the Office for Research in the Department for Health and Wellbeing, in partnership with Health Translation SA.

Patient Reported Measures (PRMs) Research Collaborative 

HTSA and the Commission on Excellence and Innovation in Health (CEIH) have partnered together to build a network of people with expertise and interest in PRMs research, and to foster partnership and collaboration in the health system.

The network provides a forum for clinical researchers and clinicians from across SA and beyond to come together and share their knowledge and bring focus to the benefits of PRMs research in clinical practice.

Preparations have begun for the 2nd PRMs Research Collaborative Symposium to be held at SAHMRI on 14 November 2022, with the theme Using patient-reported measures to improve health care for culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) and other underrepresented populations.

It’s not too late to become a member of the PRMs Research Collaborative! If you’d like to learn more, or register to join, visit the 
CEIH PRMs website 

Erin Morton: Finalist for SA 
Health Translation SA would like to congratulate Erin Morton, who has been named as a finalist in the 2022 Women's Agenda Leadership awards as an emerging leader in health.

Erin is a long time collaborator of HTSA, and has been involved in driving the
HeSANDA program both in the design phase and as a member of the steering committee. 

Erin has also been a notable supporter of the SA WHRTN. 

We wish Erin all the best for the finals!

New Vegetable Intake Strategic Alliance Position Statement

Celebrating some great work by members from our partner organisations CSIRO and Flinders University,

The Vegetable Intake Strategic Alliance (VISA) group, a national research initiative has released an evidence-based, best practice document which explores new thinking on how to address children’s low intake of vegetables.

The statement outlined 3 critical requirements for a successful increase in children’s vegetable intake:
1. Shifting focus to liking and enjoyment of vegetables (the joy)
2. Creating vegetable exposure opportunities for children (more places to eat veggies)
3. Working together (all parts of society working together)

Read the position statement

Omega-3 status test for prematurity risk

SA Pathology and SAHMRI are partnering to offer omega-3 testing for women with singleton pregnancies as part of the South Australian Maternal Serum Antenatal Screening (SAMSAS) program.

This work is recognised and supported by Health Translation SA as part of our First 1000 Days Flagship Program.

Click the image below to find out more about the project 

October Spotlight Series: Consumer Engagement

Join us for our quarterly Spotlight Series, where we shine the spotlight on one research translation topic during one month.

This October, we're focusing on Consumer Engagement. Every day during the month, we'll be sharing resources, links, tools and articles on this topic across
 Twitter and LinkedIn.

Additionally, we're hosting weekly webinars on key features of consumer engagement. Check out our website for more information and to register, or contact Agustina Gancia at with any questions.

IRNet Showcase

HTSA leads the National Indigenous Research(er) Capacity Building Network (IRNet).

The IRNet Showcase will bring together leaders in Indigenous health and medical research from across Australia under the theme of Our Voice – Our Research – Our Future.

The conference will discuss:
  • emerging diseases,
  • the impact of new technologies on health care and research, and
  • improving the translation and health impact of research to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities
Register to attend virtually or in person via the AHRA website

Join us at SALHN Research Week 

SALHN Research Week is an opportunity to showcase SALHN’s excellence in enquiry and research, alongside key partners. The theme for Research Week 2022 is based on the SALHN Four Fields of Enquiry, with a day being dedicated to each of the Four Fields:
  • Discovery Science
  • Clinical Trials
  • Health Services Research
  • Continuous Improvement / Implementation Science.
HTSA's CEO Wendy Keech will lead a panel on Tuesday September 27th around MRFF impact and opportunities, and there'll be additional opportunities to connect with HTSA staff and initiatives throughout the event. 

For more information visit the SALHN website

NHMRC Research Translation Long Weekend

The 10th NHMRC Research Translation Symposium will be a hybrid event, combining in person with online events. 

The event will run from Thursday 17 November- Tuesday 22 November 2022 (with a weekend break) 

The theme this year is 'Embracing Diversity', and the intention is to encourage the translation of research that improves equity and respects the health and health care decision making needs of people of different cultures, ethnic groups, socio-economic groups, abilities or ages. It includes (but is not limited to):

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
  • people who live in rural and remote areas
  • culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities
  • people living with disability.
Find our more via the NHMRC website 

Consumer and Community Engagement Summit

Join us for our annual one-day summit! This year, we will be exploring the topic of Diversity in consumer and community engagement.

Co-hosted by Health Translation SA and the SAHMRI Registries Consumer Engagement Community of Practice (led by ANZDATA), the event will take place on November 29 2022, at SAHMRI and virtually.

This summit is open to researchers, healthcare consumers and community members, coming together to celebrate successes and showcase methods for including diverse perspectives in research projects.

Find out more and register

Other upcoming events & training

ARC Industry Fellowships for early and mid career researchers

Engaging effectively with industry is an essential element in achieving research impact.

The Australian Research Council's Industry Fellowships Program is offering an invaluable opportunity for both early and mid career researchers to gain critical industry experience and forge new connections and understanding that will assist with their future research and research translation.

Find out more here

HCF Research Foundation: 2022 Translational Research Grants

The HCF Research Foundation Translational Research Grants (TRG) scheme is focused on responding to health issues identified within health care provider communities, and the translation of research findings into practice by health service delivery stakeholders.

The 2022 TRG round is calling for applications specifically addressing the topic of providing appropriate care for the elderly in the community.

This topic aims to facilitate implementation of care models for the elderly that are delivered in the community and includes (but is not limited to) health issues such as frailty, polypharmacy, palliative care, rehabilitation, end-of-life and advanced care planning, residential aged care and primary care engagement.

Click here to find out more

Flinders PhD Enterprise Scholarship: Caring Futures Institute 

Flinders University and Adelaide Primary Health Network are offering a PhD Enterprise Scholarship to undertake innovative research into implementation models for mental health services.
  • Receive a $28,854 (2022 full-time rate, indexed annually) per annum scholarship tax free, for up to 3.5 years
  • Apply your research skills during an internship with Adelaide Primary Health Network

For more information and to apply, please contact Dr Candice Oster. Applications close 30 September 2022.

New grant opportunities regularly available throughout the year

National Health and Medical Research Institute (NHMRC)
Within Australia, the NHMRC is the major funding body for health and medical research. There are a range of funding schemes that have different focuses and purposes. To see all of the funding schemes available, click here

The MRFF provides grants of financial assistance to support health and medical research and innovation, with the objective of improving the health and wellbeing of Australians. The NHMRC works with the Department of Health to implement disbursements from the MRFF. To see what MRFF grant opportunities are currently open and their status, click here.

Many of our partner organisations have a dedicated person that can assist you in applying for MRFF grant opportunities. For a list of South Australian based MRFF Support Leads, click here

Follow us on Linked In and Twitter to learn about other funding opportunities that become available throughout the year.

Do you have an event, story or funding opportunity to share in our Newsletter?  

We would love to hear from you!

Come and chat to the Health Translation SA team on Level 8 in the SAHMRI Building (left of the central staircase) or contact Kahlia Green, our Strategic Communications Manager via email at
Connect with us

Copyright © 2022 Health Translation SA

For any queries please contact:
P 08 8128 4380

Postal address:
PO Box 11060
Adelaide SA 5001

Our staff team location:
South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI)
North Terrace
Adelaide SA 5000

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