Burnet researchers, Associate Professor Paul Dietze, Professor Robert Power and Dr Mark Stoove part of the audience at the Colloquium
Injecting drug use accounts for an extremely high burden of health and social harm in the community. This Centre for Research Excellence (CREIDU) will generate new evidence about ways to improve the health and social burden of injecting drug use in Australia and develop tools for translating research into policy and practice.
Featuring academic partners from the Burnet Institute, the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, the Kirby Institute, Turning Point Alcohol and Drug Centre, the National Drug Research Institute and the School of Population Health at the University of Queensland, the Centre will unite Australia’s leading researchers with community organisations, Anex, Harm Reduction Victoria, Hepatitis C Victoria and government, including the ACT Corrections Health Program.
Burnet’s Associate Professor Margaret Hellard who is a Lead Investigator with CREIDU, says the strengthened links forged between researchers will also benefit the communities they serve.
“The Centre’s focus is to increase our knowledge about IDU and its health and social effects, so ultimately we can identify ways to prevent or reduce the severity of health and social outcomes through policy and practice,” Associate Professor Hellard said.
“What also makes this NHMRC-funded project unique is that we also bring together experts from IDU-related areas such as blood-borne virus, epidemiology and treatment (particularly hepatitis C), overdose prevention, justice health and psychiatric health.
“Australia’s research capacity in illicit drug epidemiology will also be enhanced by CREIDU supporting three postdoctoral-fellows and six PhD students.”
Internationally-renowned Canadian researcher, Professor Thomas Kerr from the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, delivered the keynote address at CREIDU’s inaugural Colloquium at the Burnet Institute on 18 July.