Health Impacts Research Centre

Welcome to the Health Impacts Research Centre


The vision of HIRC is to undertake interdisciplinary research that positively impacts on the health of whole communities. 

HIRC creates synergies between health researchers from different disciplines within the SMAH Faculty. Our values are innovation, collaboration, inclusiveness, integrity and accountability.

HIRC aims to:

  • Encourage innovation and self-sustaining research collaboration by investing in a HIRC collaborative project. This is a transdisciplinary program targeting the high prevalence of chronic kidney disease in the Illawarra Shoalhaven region.
  • Build capacity amongst its researchers by supporting small projects and related publications and conference presentations,
  • Enhance research quality through enhancements in training, workshops and seminars with external facilitators and collaborators.


The mission of HIRC is to undertake interdisciplinary research to better understand personal and community experiences related to living with chronic conditions and inform innovative approaches to the prevention and management of chronic conditions, particularly to local communities. Underpinning the mission is a strong focus on capacity development of researchers.

HIRC’s mission is to better understand experiences related to living with illness and disease through innovative research and evidence based practice. 


HIRC acknowledges a life course approach to health conditions and undertakes research across all ages.

There is a need for innovative approaches to support individuals and communities living with chronic conditions, including effective implementation of health resources in order to provide best outcomes for communities.

Research Priorities                             

HIRC members undertake collaborative research to achieve:

  1. Translational research in clinical care and population health
  • supporting a practice research network that informs healthcare solutions, including general practitioners and practice nurses
  • community based programs that provide supportive environments to promote health
  • interdisciplinary models of care for lifestyle modifications

2. Building the evidence base for practice

  • proof of principle studies and evidence based reviews that support innovative research in practice
  • research informing clinical decision making
  • population health research to identify risk factors of local communities

3. Developing fundamental knowledge relevant to practice (experimental, mechanistic and epidemiological research)

  • clinical trials in targeted populations
  • applied research on mechanisms of action and novel biomarkers for lifestyle interventions

4. Delivering effective primary care practitioners

  • research to improve the education of healthcare providers

Recent successes

RITA grant successes 2021: Congratulations to the following HIRC members

Effectiveness of Quality Incentives in General Practice (EQuIP-GP) Trial health economic analysis

  • Andrew Bonney (SMAH)
  • Utsana Tonmukayakul (External – Deakin)
  • Grant Russell (External – External – Monash)
  • Jan Radford (External – UTas)
  • Gregory Peterson (External – UTas)
  • Nicholas Zwar (External – Bond)
  • Judy Mullan (SMAH)
  • Christine Metusela (SMAH)  

Preventing cardiovascular disease in type 2 diabetes: Personalising exercise timing to mitigate hyperglycaemic-induced vascular disease. A randomised multidisciplinary clinical trial

  • Monique Francois (SMAH)
  • Thomas Astell-Burt (ASSH)
  • Lauren Roach (SMAH)
  • Courtney Chang (SMAH)
  • Geoff Melville (SMAH)
  • Beenu Bastian (External – ISHLD)

Exploring the impact of plant-based eating for people with kidney disease: Improving both human and planetary health?

  • Kelly Lambert (SMAH)
  • Karen Charlton (SMAH)
  • Emma Heffernan (EIS)
  • Xiaotao Jiang (External - Microbiome Research Centre)
  • Hicham Cheikh Hassan (External – Wollongong Hospital, ISHLD)

The incidence of delirium in older people undergoing emergency surgery in NSW hospitals: Understanding risk factors and health impacts to improve health outcomes

  • Jessica Nealon (SMAH)
  • Ezinne Igwe (SMAH)
  • Victoria Traynor (SMAH)
  • Thomas Suesse (EIS)
  • Pauline O’Shaughnessy (EIS)
  • Valerie Wilson (External - ISHLD)
  • Alera Bowden (External - ISHLD)

Congratulations to Associate Professor Rowena Ivers as a CI on an NHMRC Clinical Trials grant ($2.352m) led by the University of Sydney: "IMPLORE - Implementing an opioid stewardship intervention to reduce opioid use."

2017 HIRC Annual Collaboration Retreat

In 2017 HIRC members produced a collaborative research document following a planning retreat, to drive future developments, as outlined in the summary report.

Download Summary Report

Contact Health Impacts Research Centre