Friday, 04 June 2010
ECU has been awarded $4.6 million to establish an Interprofessional Learning Disease Management Unit (DMU) situated on the Joondalup Campus.
Funded by the Australian Government through a nationally competitive process, under the Increased Clinical Training Capacity Program, the DMU will not only provide increased clinical training but will also support innovative approaches to deal with the increased number of people undertaking health professional training and education.
ECU Acting Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Finlay-Jones, says the DMU will create a unique community based resource which encompasses consulting, GP, nursing and allied health services for clients who have complex and chronic diseases.
“A university-based, interprofessional clinic of this kind has not been established in Western Australia to date”.
“Chronic disease management is a priority area and the identified patient population for this clinic is people with general medical conditions as well as chronic health problems such as musculoskeletal and immunological concerns and mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression,” said Professor Finlay-Jones.
The development of the DMU will be further enhanced through support from ECU’s partners on the project, the North Metropolitan Area Health Service, Joondalup Health Campus and the University of Western Australia, which means an additional contribution to the resource to the sum $971, 982.
Professor Cobie Rudd, Associate Dean of Health, believes the project will provide a strong learning environment for ECU health students in fields ranging from nursing and midwifery, physiotherapy, psychology, exercise physiology, paramedicine, nutrition and dietetics to occupational therapy and speech pathology, as well as for UWA medicine students.
“We will be providing a new site and model for clinical training that can accommodate significant numbers of students from all health disciplines.
“This cross-sectoral and cross-university model will aid student development while focusing on the quality of patient care”.
“It is envisioned that the new Centre will expose students to the ‘real world’ in a safe and supportive setting so their attitude and skills sets can be enhanced,” said Professor Rudd.
“There is little doubt that morale and role satisfaction for students, supervisors and health professionals, along with patient outcomes, can be improved through this approach”.
This unique project is an initiative of Professor Rudd and her team, and will put ECU at the forefront of health teaching and learning within Western Australia.