Chronic disease research in Adelaide’s northern suburbs has been given a vital boost thanks to the extension of a major South Australian chronic disease cohort study.

Enabled by a grant provided by South Australian charity The Hospital Research Foundation (THRF), the research team at the North West Adelaide Health Study (NWAHS) will now establish a new and exciting collaboration with the Research Directorate at the Lyell McEwin Health Service (LMHS).

In operation since 1999, the NWAHS was formulated to provide much needed and unique representative, longitudinal data on chronic conditions and health-related risk factors in South Australia. Its northern extension will enable more research in this area, providing clinicians and researchers in the LMHS access to data from the local communities in the northern suburbs.

Leading the new collaboration as one of the Principal Investigators of NWAHS, Professor Robert Adams from The Queen Elizabeth Hospital (TQEH) and the University of Adelaide says this is an important step for improving the health of the community in Adelaide’s northern suburbs.

“NWAHS data has been used by a number of national and international researchers across a range of international projects, such as ones examining blood pressure and obesity,” Professor Adams said.

“Nationally, it’s also been used by groups from Melbourne and Sydney to examine such questions as the link between diabetes, hypertension and cancer.

“Locally, NWAHS data is used in many projects, such as examining frailty and conditions such as sleep apnoea in the community. By enabling LMHS to access this data, it will present opportunities for projects that really focus on research that will benefit those living in these northern areas.”

On Wednesday February 22, Professor Adams presented at the LMHS with its Professor of Medicine, Professor Mark Boyd about the new collaboration.

“We are very grateful for the support of The Hospital Research Foundation in enabling this new collaboration, ensuring our clinicians and researchers have access to local data to enable them to conduct research to benefit the local community,” Professor Boyd said.

“We want to provide the best healthcare we can to Adelaide’s northern community, informed by the best research.  Access to NWAHS is just the start of a real step forward in our research capacity and an exciting new alliance for us with THRF and its supportive community of donors.”

The Hospital Research Foundation CEO Paul Flynn says THRF is extremely proud to now support research and patient care within LMHS.

“We look forward to seeing the outcomes of research in this area using NWAHS data to change and ultimately save the lives of our fellow South Australians,” he said.


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