New research group is looking after the health of western Sydney

Date: 05/11/2002

The health of people in western Sydney is set to receive a boost with the launch of a new UWS nursing research group.

The Greater Western Sydney Nursing Research Group is made up of some of the University's most experienced nursing educators and researchers who specialise in areas such as aged care, palliative care, oncology, paediatrics, cardiology, women's health, mental health and rehabilitation.

According to leader Professor Lesley Wilkes, the group will carry out research that has a particular emphasis on western Sydney and will utilise the group's existing relationships with the GWS region's area health services.

"We wanted to bring together a group of experienced nursing professionals to conduct high-quality research that has real relevance to the community and can improve the health of people in Sydney's west and regional areas," says Professor Wilkes.

"Our main focus will be chronic and complex illness across people's lives. Many of the illnesses and conditions we will be studying are particularly relevant to the people of western Sydney, for example heart disease, mental health, cancer, women's health and aged care.

"Much of our research will also be carried out in collaboration with the area health services. Many members of the group have co-joint appointments with health services and hospitals in western Sydney, which will allow us to draw upon the experience and specialist knowledge of both academic and clinical staff.

"The long-term goal of the group is to promote greater awareness of health issues in Sydney's west and establish better support services and education programs that are tailored to the area's specific needs."

Some of the first research projects to be carried out by the group include: quality of care in acute and residential aged care facilities; assessing the palliative care and support needs of people with heart disease in urban and rural communities; and assessing people's awareness and knowledge of skin and prostate cancer.

The GWS Nursing Research group will be officially launched by Professor Judy Lumby, Executive Director of the NSW College of Nursing.

WHEN:Thursday 7 November 2002
WHERE:John Lowenthal Auditorium, Westmead Hospital

For more information or requests for interviews:

Amanda Whibley
Senior Media Officer
Phone: (02) 9678 7472
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