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Successful Research Grant at Colac Area Health

Colac Area Health Allied Health Team have been funded to investigate the burden of malnutrition in hospital patients.

The research has been funded by Western Alliance Academic Health Sciences Centre.

The research will be conducted in partnership with Deakin University and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Research will be led by Research Fellow Laura Alston, PhD, and Megan Green, Clinical Dietitian.

The research grant is the first awarded to the Allied Health Team; Laura Alston said “One of the advantages is that the research project will increase clinical research capacity in the organisation.”

Ms Alston said that ‘the project will seek to understand the burden of malnutrition in patients presenting to Colac Area Health and the associated risk factors that may put people at greater risk, such as living within the town, or in the outer rural areas’.

Malnutrition in hospital contributes to poorer outcomes for patients, such as reduced health status, longer length of stay and prolonged recovery once they return home.

‘We hope this project will led to improvements in the management and treatment of malnutrition in our region for the future’ Ms Alston said.

The findings of the project will have the potential to inform nutrition policy and care across Western Victoria.

Importantly the research will generate more evidence on the levels of malnutrition in rural health services.

This is the first research project to gain funding in the Allied Health department at Colac Area Health.

For more information about the project please contact Laura Alston, email: [email protected]