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Australian experts call for public health and social measures to continue alongside COVID-19 vaccination

The latest evidence shows that several personal protective and social measures, including handwashing, mask wearing, and physical distancing are effective and sustainable measures to help reduce the incidence COVID-19 and should be continued alongside vaccination.


Common household disinfectant may lead to superbug mutation

The COVID-19 pandemic has for many people reinforced the notion that disinfectants are our committed allies in the fight against disease. But now a groundbreaking Macquarie University study, published in The Lancet journal EBioMedicine, has found a commonly used disinfectant may be a double agent, blocking antibiotics from working and even promoting antibiotic resistance.


Medical mums shouldering more of the burden than fathers during the pandemic

COVID-19 has been difficult for parents trying to balance careers, home life, and keeping their loved ones safe. A new study indicates that not only are clinicians not immune to these stressors, but the long-term effects could be devastating for healthcare overall.


Microbiome discovery could help save Indigenous kids' hearing

Bacteria found in children's upper respiratory systems could help fight chronic middle ear infections, the leading cause of preventable hearing loss and deafness in Indigenous communities.


Premature birth could be predicted as early as 10 weeks after conception

Mothers at risk of premature birth could be identified far sooner in pregnancy than current tests allow by looking for specific bacteria and chemicals in their cervicovaginal fluid. A new UK study, published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation from researchers at King's College London and pregnancy charity Tommy's, looks at how clues in the mothers' vaginal microbiome (tiny living organisms that can affect health, like bacteria and viruses) and metabolome (small molecules naturally created by the body, like sugars and acids) can help predict the risk of premature birth.


Innovative home grown calculator improves the safety of aminoglycoside use

Infections caused by Gram-negative bacteria are becoming increasingly prevalent and constitute a serious threat to public health. They are difficult to treat and are frequently associated with high morbidity and mortality rates. Now a Queensland-developed calculator for the use of bacteria-killing aminoglycoside antibiotics will help make it easier for clinicians throughout the state to safely prescribe and administer these powerful but high-risk drugs.


Water injections could be used to relieve labour pains

The effectiveness of using sterile water injections for labour contraction pain will be tested by an international collaboration of researchers, thanks to federal funding. The Commonwealth Government’s Medical Research Future Fund has granted more than $300 thousand to the two-year project, run by Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, The University of Queensland, Charles Darwin University and Sweden’s University of Skövde.


Mackay initiative helping to improve the health and wellbeing of patients on the autism spectrum

Arming people with the right information and resources can drastically improve health outcomes for autistic patients. The new Mackay Autism HealthPathway seeks to provide clinicians with a knowledge resource to do just that. This world-first initiative is helping to empower primary health care professionals in the region to improve and support the health and wellbeing, across the lifespan, of people on the Autism spectrum.


Are we closing the gap? Significant improvements in the burden of disease experienced by Indigenous Australians

There has been a decline in the rate of healthy years of life lost due to living with illness or injury and premature death for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, according to a new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). The Australian Burden of Disease Study 2018: key findings for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people shows that Indigenous Australians continue to experience higher rates of ‘disease burden’ than the Australian population as a whole, but the gap is narrowing.


First evidence of inflammatory micro clots in blood of people with Long COVID

New research indicates that an overload of various inflammatory molecules, literally "trapped" inside insoluble microscopic blood clots (micro clots), might be the cause of some of the lingering symptoms experienced by people enduring Long COVID.