Helping children damaged by alcohol
5 January 2007
A University postgraduate has been awarded a scholarship from the National Health and Medical Research Council to continue her research into the impact of alcohol on the unborn child.
Dr Elizabeth Peadon, a fellow in academic paediatrics at the Children's Hospital at Westmead, was awarded a $92,000 Public Health Postgraduate Scholarship to examine the brain damage of children affected by Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), and to help design prevention campaigns.
Her scholarship was announced by the Federal Minister for Health and Ageing, Tony Abbott, among other funding for university and medical institutes.
Dr Peadon says that Foetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder is a common but preventable cause of mental retardation, birth defects, growth deficiency, developmental delay and chronic ill health.
"Early diagnosis improves the outcome for children with FASD, but there are no specialised diagnostic and assessment services for children with FASD in Australia."
Dr Peadon's research programme will conduct a national survey to investigate Australian women's knowledge of and use of alcohol during pregnancy, as well as reviewing the effectiveness of existing treatments of children with FASD.
"Children with FASD can be helped with early intervention, medication and education strategies. Our research will help us develop a diagnostic and management service model for Australian children suffering from the effects of foetal alcohol spectrum disorder.
Contact: Andrew Potter
Phone: 02 9351 4514