News

New research centre sheds light on Western Sydney's most pressing health issues


9 October 2013

The Charles Perkins Centre Nepean will work with the Western Sydney community to develop research programs, collaborate on new research partnerships, develop cross-disciplinary teaching programs, and inspire and train the next generation of researchers and practitioners [L to R: Prof Bruce Robinson; Prof Michael Peek; Fiona Scott MP, Member for Lindsay; Prof Jill Trewhella; Prof Stephen Simpson].
The Charles Perkins Centre Nepean will work with the Western Sydney community to develop research programs, collaborate on new research partnerships, develop cross-disciplinary teaching programs, and inspire and train the next generation of researchers and practitioners [L to R: Prof Bruce Robinson; Prof Michael Peek; Fiona Scott MP, Member for Lindsay; Prof Jill Trewhella; Prof Stephen Simpson].

The University of Sydney is bringing its most innovative and visionary multi-disciplinary research and education centre to Western Sydney to find real-world solutions to some of the most pressing health issues in the region: obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

The Charles Perkins Centre Nepean, based at Sydney Medical School's Nepean Clinical School, will bring together internationally recognised health and medical researchers with experts from fields as diverse as architecture, social sciences and engineering to find practical approaches to help ease the burden of chronic disease.

As Australia's leading causes of morbidity and mortality, the effects of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease are particularly pronounced in Western Sydney. More than half of its rapidly growing and ageing population is overweight or obese, with high rates of stress, diabetes and smoking.

"Obesity, cardiovascular disease and diabetes are not going to be fixed by medical treatments alone," says Professor Michael Peek, Head of Sydney Medical School Nepean and local Windsor resident.

"What is needed is research expertise from many different groups, working together, to better understand and solve the complexities of these diseases. This new centre gives us a great opportunity to contribute to this fight for better health."

The Centre will be launched on 9 October by University of Sydney Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Jill Trewhella, Academic Director of the Charles Perkins CentreProfessor Stephen Simpson, Dean of Sydney Medical School Professor Bruce Robinson and Professor Michael Peek. Local dignitaries will include Bart Bassett MP, Member for Londonderry, Fiona Scott MP, Member for Lindsay and Counsellor Ross Fowler, Mayor of Penrith.

The Charles Perkins Centre Nepean will work with the Western Sydney community and the Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District to develop research programs, collaborate on new research partnerships, develop cross-disciplinary teaching programs, and inspire and train the next generation of researchers and practitioners.

"We hope that by working hand-in-hand with local residents we'll be able to make real differences not just to their lives, but to the lives of people all over Australia," says Professor Stephen Simpson, Academic Director of the Charles Perkins Centre.

"Working directly with local communities is at the heart of the research and education mission of the Charles Perkins Centre. With strong existing community support for research and education at the University's Sydney Medical School Nepean, we are confident that Charles Perkins Centre Nepean will be a valuable partnership for both local residents and researchers."


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Media enquiries: Katie Szittner, 02 9351 2261, 0478 316 809, katie.szittner@sydney.edu.au