Research

Detailed below are the current Research Projects Nunkuwarrin Yunti are involved in as well as a brief overview of some past projects.

Healing the past by nurturing the future: perinatal screening & support for Aboriginal parents who have experienced complex trauma in their own childhoods

This study aims to develop culturally acceptable and feasible perinatal strategies to identify and enable healing and recovery of Aboriginal parents who have experienced complex childhood trauma themselves, to prevent intergenerational trauma.

The study is being led by Dr Catherine Chamberlain from La Trobe University, and supported locally by a large team of experienced Aboriginal researchers.

A collaborative agreement has been established between Nunkuwarrin Yunti, the study team, and several other Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations across Victoria and NT; and staff from Nunkuwarrin Yunti’s Women’s Children’s Family Health program are helping to co-design awareness, recognition, assessment and support strategies.

For more information click here

This four-year study commenced in January 2018 and is due for completion in December 2021.

ASQ:Extended TRAK – a child development outcome measure for Australian Aboriginal children

This study aims to develop the ASQ:Extended TRAK, a child development outcome measure for Aboriginal children that will be used to assess individual child developmental progress and evaluate the impact of early childhood programs.

The study is being led by Anita D’Aprano from the University of Melbourne and has received funding from the NT Department of Education, and through a Melbourne Graduate School of Education Seed Funding Grant and Melbourne Medical School Seed Funding Grant.

Nunkuwarrin Yunti staff from the Women’s Children’s Family Health program participated in focus group interviews with researchers to help modify the ASQ development tool into a version that is culturally appropriate. In the next phase of the project, the researchers are hoping to validate the updated tool by trialling it with interested families.

Mayi Kuwayu: The National Study of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Wellbeing

In Ngiyampaa language, ‘Mayi Kuwayu’ means to follow Aboriginal people over time. This national study aims to understand how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture links to health and wellbeing. Aboriginal researchers at the Australian National University have worked with communities to develop a survey that will provide information for community, services and policy makers about things that will improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander wellbeing. The researchers will share the study findings so that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities can use the results in a way that helps them. Use of the data collected during the study will be strictly controlled by an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander governance committee.

Any Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person aged 16 years and older is invited to participate in the study. The survey can be completed on paper, online or over the phone, and will soon be available to complete in person at Nunkuwarrin Yunti.

For more information, click here.

Proposed completion date: December 2021

Safely Sleeping Aboriginal Babies in SA

This research project aims to contribute to reducing the rates of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDs) and Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy (SUDI) in Aboriginal babies. The project offers an opportunity for Aboriginal families in South Australia to provide a safe sleep environment for their newborn babies and increase family awareness and knowledge of safe sleeping behaviours.

Nunkuwarrin Yunti is partnering with Flinders University, the Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia, SA Health and affiliated hospitals to offer the Pēpi-Pod® safe sleep alternative program to Aboriginal families who are birthing at one of the partner hospitals during the research period. The project is also offering an online safe sleep education program to health professionals who work with pregnant women and infants, including the nurses and family partnership workers at Nunkuwarrin Yunti.

For more information, click here.

Proposed completion date: June 2020

Tackling Indigenous Smoking Program Evaluation 2018-19 to 2021-22

This evaluation is an extension of the Tackling Indigenous Smoking (TIS) Program Evaluation 2015-2016 to 2017-2018 that Nunkuwarrin Yunti was also involved in, which was funded by the Department of Health to reduce tobacco smoking in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities through a locally tailored population health approach. The purpose of the evaluation is to assess the extent that best practice and evidence-based interventions are in place and are effectively implemented in the program, and to determine where program improvements can be made.

Nunkuwarrin Yunti staff and clients directly involved in TIS Program related activities are invited to participate in research interviews to discuss their experiences of the program and their perceptions of progress towards achievement of program outcomes.

Proposed completion date: December 2022

Supporting Indigenous Primary Care Services to Reduce the Harms of Alcohol

This study aims to develop and evaluate a whole of service approach to increase uptake of evidence-based treatment for unhealthy alcohol use in primary care settings targeting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The study will test (using a cluster randomised controlled trial design) whether a collaborative, service-level intervention can result in improved rates of recommended screening and provision of treatment for unhealthy alcohol use (i.e. for drinking above recommended limits, including alcohol use disorders). The research team from the University of Sydney will support implementation of Nunkuwarrin Yunti identified solutions, which could include training, resources and refinement of practice software.

Nunkuwarrin Yunti is one of 22 active sites around Australia involved in this study.

Proposed Completion Date: May 2021

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sexual Health Surveillance Network (ATLAS)

The primary objective of the ATLAS project is to establish a national sentinel sexually transmitted infections (STI) and blood borne virus (BBV) surveillance system among Aboriginal primary health care services for surveillance, monitoring and evaluation purposes.

The secondary objectives include:

  • to develop a national agreed set of STI and BBV clinical indicators
  • to monitor trends in STI and BBV testing, positivity, and clinical management as per clinical indicators over time;
  • to monitor trends in STI and BBV knowledge, risk practices and health service access of young people in order to help shape future primary care interventions;
  • to establish a network to enable planners and policy makers to determine where interventions are most needed and how well they are working;
  • and to build the capacity of participating hubs and sites to use data for quality improvement processes

Nunkuwarrin Yunti has previous experience in STI/BBV research and recognizes the importance of best practice care to treat and prevent STI/BBV infections.

Proposed Completion Date: December 2020

For more information on any of the above studies Nunkuwarrin Yunti is involved in, please contact the Data Quality and Research Officer on 08 8406 1600

Involvement in recently completed research projects

Nunkuwarrin Yunti has also been involved in the below listed projects that have recently come to completion:

  • Career pathways for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Professionals
  • Aboriginal Cardiovascular Omega 3 Trial
  • Evaluation in Health Promotion
  • Testing and positivity rates for sexually transmissible infections (STIs) in South Australian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services
  •  A Framework to assist Aboriginal Health Services to develop Best Practice Models of primary healthcare service delivery (CREATE Case Study)