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Indigenous ICU patients suffer higher mortality rates in the long term

Rigorous follow-up of Indigenous patients recovering from critical illness, particularly those who have discharged themselves from hospital, is essential, a new Medical Journal of Australia paper says.


Risks of preterm births fall under new Australian initiative

The rate of potentially fatal preterm births in Western Australian hospitals can be safely reduced by up to 20% when a coordinated series of interventions is applied to pregnant women, according to researchers at The University of Western Australia.


Australian-first model for midwives helps improve maternal and childhood vaccination rates

An Australian-first antenatal vaccine communication model for midwives showed promise for increasing uptake of maternal and childhood vaccines, according to a pilot study. The research, led by the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI) and published in Vaccine, found the intervention was feasible, acceptable and improved midwives' vaccine discussions with expectant mothers.


Drug-resistant Candida auris fungus found in Melbourne hospital

Australia's first possible case of locally transmitted Candida auris – an emergent, multidrug-resistant yeast – was identified with two cases in one Melbourne hospital ward in 2018, and may be the first instance of transmission of C. auris in Australia, prompting warnings of the importance of greater awareness and research investment into this pathogen.


New testing system predicts septic shock outcomes

Almost 55,000 Australians develop sepsis each year, and around 8,700 people will die from it. Sepsis affects people of all ages and patients across a broad range of clinical specialties but particularly the very young, the very old and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The condition, which happens when the body has an extreme response to a bacterial or viral infection, causing a chain reaction that can lead to organ failure and death, has had few strategies for treatment. Researchers have now developed a personalised method that can accurately predict which patients with sepsis would recover quickly, recover later, or ultimately succumb to the condition.


Special edition of "Australian Critical Care" - A collaborative allied health research culture in intensive care

This month a special issue of Australian Critical Care journal, published in Clinical Key for Nursing, focusses on research by allied health professionals (AHPs) and the benefits of multidisciplinary, collaborative research in intensive care. Professions under the banner of allied health include physiotherapy, speech pathology, occupational therapy, dietetics, psychology, and pharmacy and represent around 20% of health professionals in Australia. However, there is a lack of high-quality evidence to guide clinical care in most allied health professions, leading to an expansion in allied health research.


World-first saliva test detects hidden throat cancer

A simple saliva test developed by QUT biomedical scientists has detected early throat cancer in a person who had no symptoms and no clinical signs of cancer. In what is believed to be a world-first, the non-invasive test picked up HPV-DNA in a saliva sample from an infected but otherwise apparently healthy person. 


Blueprint to protect the mental health of frontline medical workers

University of Queensland researchers have developed a set of recommendations to manage the mental health of frontline medical workers during viral outbreaks, such as COVID-19.


UQ, CSIRO, say poo could be an early warning system for tracking COVID-19

Researchers across the globe have been tracing the spread of the coronavirus through waste water and sewage and several scientific studies have picked up the clear presence of COVID-19 in patients' stools. Testing human sewage could now become a key way of tracking the pandemic's spread, and a precious early warning system for a feared second wave, said researchers from the University of Queensland and CSIRO who are developing an early warning system to track COVID-19 in the community through tracing the presence of the SARS-CoV-2 RNA in raw sewage.


New QUT model predicts Coronavirus course, resolution and eventual good news

COVID-19 has infected millions and killed hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, but a new predictor model devised at QUT offers glimmers of hope, suggesting the worst has passed and indicating well under 1,000 deaths for Australia.