VicReN members are encouraged to participate in approved, ethical research projects designed to acknowledge and support general practice. VicReN aims to endorse projects which have been designed by a team involving general practitioners or supported by general practitioners who have an advisory capacity. Projects must be important to primary health care and wherever possible involve educating general practitioners, practice nurses and practice staff, and as such, will help build knowledge and research capacity of those participating
1) Ageing Care in General Practice Study
VicReN provides recruitment and administrative support for this cluster randomised, multi-centre trial in collaboration with the University of Newcastle, University of New South Wales and University of Adelaide. The study aims to determine how general practitioners can best diagnose and manage early dementia and distinguish it from depression and other conditions. It will also examine whether the use of a new dementia screening tool (GPCOG) and training in the RACGP "Care of Patients with Dementia in General Practice" guidelines will improve the diagnosis and management of both patients with dementia and their carers. Recruitment occurs through randomised selection only. GPs are eligible for 40 Category 1 QA&CPD points for research, 75+ Health Assessments may be undertaken on study participants where they have not been completed in the last 12 months, and at the study conclusion, control/placebo GPs will undertake the training. Pooled reports of patient assessments will be provided to each GP. For more information, please contact the study coordinator Helen McPartlan on (03) 8344 3392 or email@example.com.
2) Weave Study
VicReN provides recruitment and administrative support to the weave project. This NHMRC-funded trial aims to build a better picture of how GPs should care for the emotional well-being of women. Specifically, weave will evaluate if an intervention in general practice involving screening for intimate partner abuse and feedback to GPs, training for GPs or practice nurses and a brief counselling intervention for women increases women’s safety planning, mental health and quality of life. GPs are eligible for 40 Category 1 QA&CPD points and may nominate a nurse from their practice to be involved. Practices are reimbursed for their involvement and a report on their patients is provided at the study conclusion. Contact Lorna on (03) 8344 3369 or firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
3) Exercise and Type 2 Diabetes Study
Sophie Yeo, PhD candidate from the Department of Physiology at the University of Melbourne, is conducting research to better understand the molecular bases of type 2 diabetes and the effects of exercise so as to optimise existing, and develop potentially novel, therapeutic strategies that enhance health outcomes in type 2 diabetes. She seeks assistance in identifying potential participants – these patients must have been diagnosed with diabetes and are being managed primarily by diet/weight loss, with perhaps oral hypoglycaemic agents, but ideally not with metformin or TZDs. For further information, please contact: Ms. Sophie Elizabeth Yeo, Department of Physiology, the University of Melbourne. Phone: (03) 8344 5851 Email: email@example.com.
4) Better Outcomes for Obese Children in General Practice: Randomised Controlled Trial of a New Shared-Care Model vs. Usual Care
This NHMRC-funded trial aims to examine an innovative shared-care approach to the management of childhood obesity, drawing together four established lines of research:
- specialist child obesity approaches that are known to be effective;
- positive aspects of our previous child obesity prevention general practice trials;
- computerised support and decision assistance in primary care; and
- the effectiveness of shared-care approaches.
Because all elements are already in place, it has a high degree of feasibility and, we believe, a high chance of success.
This trial addresses the urgent need identified in the 2003 NHMRC Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Management of Overweight and Obesity in Children and Adolescents for simple, well-designed intervention studies which can be translated into usual clinical practice. If effective, benefits would include increased general practitioner identification of childhood obesity; a shift in focus towards younger obese children (for whom treatment is more effective and secondary prevention of morbidity is still possible); and a replicable, feasible, cost-effective primary care approach to childhood overweight/obesity tailored to the Australian health care system. For more information, please contact Ruby Biezen on 8344 3392 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
PC4 is the Primary Care Collaborative Cancer Clinical Trials Group. We are funded by Cancer Australia to develop and conduct cancer research in primary care. PC4 aims to fill a clear gap in cancer care research, most of which currently happens in the tertiary care sector or in laboratories.
Our Group fosters collaboration between researchers, health care practitioners and consumers to:
- Build research capacity and infrastructure
- Enable the development of pre-trial studies, leading to large-scale multi-site clinical trials
- Fill the evidence gaps in oncology in primary care and
- Improve health outcomes and care for cancer patients.
As much of primary care research is conducted within and with the assistance of general practices, some of PC4’s seed funding has been used to support VicReN. VicReN assist us by giving VicReN members the opportunity to become involved in PC4 primary care cancer research projects.
You can find out more about PC4 by visiting our website at www.pc4tg.com.au.