January 6, 2022

Research grant for Northern Health Family Planning Clinic

After receiving the prestigious University of Melbourne Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Innovation Grant earlier this year, the team at the Northern Health Family Planning Clinic have been selected for a further $50,000 research grant. This is from The Victorian Nursing and Midwifery Trust for their work on partnering with the community to co-design an improved model of care for the family planning clinic at Broadmeadows Hospital.

This highly sought-after grant is awarded to health services to undertake research that aims to advance nursing and midwifery practice and improve patient outcomes. “Through this research we hope to demonstrate the value of midwives working to their full scope of practice in abortion and contraception care, and the positive impact this can have on outcomes and women’s experiences of care” said midwife and clinic coordinator Kate Chaouki.

The team, which includes A/Prof Lisa Hui (Women’s & Children’s Research Lead and MFM Specialist), Dr Jeanie Henderson (Gynaecologist and the Family Planning Clinic Medical Lead), Kate Chaouki (Family Planning Clinic Coordinator and Midwife) and Eleanor Johnson (Research Midwife) have already begun the early stages of the project, with this additional grant, funding a series of workshops where an innovative model of care will be designed in partnership with consumers from the local community.

“We are absolutely thrilled to be selected for this grant and what this means for working together with women in the community. The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the sexual and reproductive healthcare landscape in Australia, and the need to understand and address potential barriers to accessing affordable abortion care is more important than ever.” says Eleanor.

The team are also thrilled to welcome Associate Professor Cathy Vaughan from the University of Melbourne who will be lending her expertise to the co-design workshop phase of the project. Cathy has over twenty years’ experience in community engagement and community development. Over the last ten years she has led a range of community-engaged research projects, including co-design health interventions, at the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health where she is Head of the Gender and Women’s Health Unit and Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Women’s Health.

Chief Medical Officer, A/Prof. Wanda S Stelmach says,  “This is a great example of  women’s health at their most pro-active leading the way in innovative care of our community. This multi- organisational joint venture together with community, leads the way healthcare will be provided in the future in the north! Well done and congratulations to the team!”

The co-design workshops will commence in late 2022. Any feedback or enquiries can be directed to Eleanor Johnson via eleanor.johnson@nh.org.au

Featured image shows Eleanor Johnson (Research Midwife)  and Kate Chaouki (Family Planning Clinic Coordinator and Midwife) .