Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Tele health trial for regional WA

For the first time, patients living in regional Western Australia will be able to take part in cutting-edge clinical trials closer to home, with the launch of WA Country Health Service’s $11.3 million TeleTrial Program.

The initiative is set to connect patients living in regional areas with Perth-based and interstate research programs, trial treatments and monitoring using state-of-the-art telehealth technology.

Medical Research Minister, Stephen Dawson says it will bring potentially life-saving treatment closer to home for some of regional WA’s most vulnerable patients.

“For the first time, regional Western Australians can now take part in potentially life-saving clinical trials and stay in their local communities,” said Minister Dawson.

“It means that someone who might be identified as suitable for a trial can now say yes regardless of their postcode, improving access and equity for regional residents.”

The initiative recently got underway at Albany Health Campus with Great Southern-based patients welcomed into Fiona Stanley Hospital’s Vitafoot diabetes study.

A digital three-dimensional wound imaging system has been installed at Albany Health Campus and will be used by local clinicians to monitor and analyse changes to participants’ foot conditions over a 12-week period.

Albany doctors, nurses and the allied health team will work with lead researchers from Fiona Stanley Hospital’s Multidisciplinary Diabetes Foot Ulcer team using videoconferencing technology.

“I congratulate the dedicated teams in Albany and at Fiona Stanley Hospital who have worked hard to recruit the first regional participants in the Vitafoot study,” the Minister said.

“Importantly, country clinicians now have opportunities to pursue their passion for research while continuing to live and work in regional WA.

“It’s part of the Cook Government’s commitment to attracting and retaining the brightest and best, to safeguard the health of country communities.”

The Silhouette wound management system will remain in Albany long-term to help local clinicians prevent, diagnose and treat diabetes-related foot conditions.

WA Country Health Service secured the $11.3 million TeleTrial funding over five years from the Commonwealth Government’s Medical Research Future Fund.

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