Jul 23
Western Health Research Conference announces speaker line up
The 5th annual Western NSW Health Research Network (WHRN) conference is shaping up as the best yet, with a series of impressive speakers secured for the event, which is to be held in Orange on August 16 and 17.

The conference theme Celebrating Research Partnerships in the Bush, recognises the importance of health research in rural communities.

The WHRN is a peak body for health research in western NSW, with over 200 members. The Network is chaired by Associate Professor Catherine Hawke, Deputy Head of the Sydney University’s School of Rural Health, and Dr Alice Munro, the Rural Research Capability Building Manager from the Western NSW Local Health District is the deputy chair.

Associate Professor Hawke said she had been delighted with the response to the conference.
“It is very exciting to have so many great thought leaders and researcher lined up as keynote speakers,” said A/Professor Hawke. “They will inspire research and stimulate the strong research collaborations we have here in western NSW.”

Conference speakers include:
  •  Professor Sabina Knight, Director of the Mount Isa Centre for Rural and Remote Health (MICRRH), James Cook University
  •  Professor Garry Jennings, CEO Sydney Health Partners
  •  Dr Megan Williams, Senior Lecturer in Aboriginal Health and Wellbeing at the Graduate School of Health, University of Technology Sydney.
The WHRN was looking to improve access to the conference through technology, said Network deputy chair, Dr Alice Munro.

“We strongly encourage people to attend in person to get the most out of the conference.

“However both days will be livestreamed to sites across Western NSW to ensure equity of access to rural and remote clinicians, researchers and those interested improving rural health through evidence.” said Dr Munro.

The first day of the conference will include presentations of research in progress as well as interactive research support workshops hosted at the University of Sydney’s School of Rural Health in Orange. The second day will be a scientific conference consisting of keynote sessions and completed research sessions hosted at Charles Sturt University’s Orange campus.​

Professor Garry Jennings, CEO of Sydney Health Partners and one of the featured speakers, said that using research to improve public health and patient care was a unifying goal.

“What we are all working towards is translating research data into outcomes that will help improve the health of our communities,” said Professor Garry Jennings.

“Using research to improve patient care and public health in our health system through collaboration and inclusive thinking is what we do and I look forward to hearing all about the innovative research at the WHRN conference.”

Registrations are currently open for both days. Those interested can email srh.whrnadmin@sydney.edu.au or follow WHRN on Facebook or Twitter @WesternNSWHRN for further information about attending the conference.