Our researchers are passionate about uncovering ways to optimise patient care and impact service delivery. The outcomes and benefits of our research include new interventions, improved guidelines and service pathways and most importantly empowering patients and their families to be engaged with the care that they receive.
Our research vision: Embracing research to drive the best possible care for our community.
Our research mission: Through quality research and its translation to practice, we will empower our staff to work with our partners and consumers to continuously improve the care we deliver.
The Gold Coast Health Research Strategy (2022-24) identifies four strategic objectives that will enable us to develop a culture of excellence in research and be recognised as a healthcare leader:
- build research capacity
- strengthen partnerships
- embed research in health services and systems
- establish a sustainable research culture.
Establishing a sustainable research culture
We're actively increasing the number of health service and clinical research projects, and the number of staff engaged in research and education using evidence-based practice.
Across Gold Coast Health, a total of 67 new research projects started during the period (2021–2022), with $2.69 million awarded ($1.7 million from commercial partners and $1 million from government, not-for-profit organisations, and universities). Most research activities were supported by new and existing partnerships, including 11 commercial companies, nine universities, four not-for-profit organisations, and six government (including other hospital and health services).
Our collaborative research groups support research enterprise in key areas through the bringing together of a range of professionals with different skills, talents and experience that creates a culture of continuous learning and development. Gold Coast Health has 11 collaborative research groups covering a diverse range of research areas, including cancer, infectious diseases, mental health, orthopaedics, emergency care, pharmacy, allied health, maternity and children’s health, and patient and family-centred care.
With support from conjoint appointments at Griffith and Bond University, we continue to establish ourselves as a health service where high–quality research is translated into patient care.
The Clinical Trial Unit can manage and coordinate commercial and investigator-driven research projects. Together with other specialist trial groups including oncology and haematology, trauma and intensive care, clinical trials have become part of the hospital journey.
In 2022, the unit continued to provide support to 30 principal investigators across 17 departments with 58 active clinical trials. The number of departments active in clinical trials has grown by four, and the number of active trials has grown by 10, in comparison to the previous reporting period. Of the active trials, 53 per cent are commercial trials.
Patients and their carers are included in our research from the design state through to delivering the outputs of research. Researchers are delivering on projects that optimise patient care by training clinicians in new interventions, using research to validate clinical guidelines, evaluate new service assessment pathways and, most importantly, to empower patients and their families be engaged with the care they receive.
By embedding research and evidence-based practice into health service delivery and patient care, we are helping our clinicians to deliver world-class care - a key objective of Gold Coast Health's strategic plan.
We partner with like-minded organisations to improve lead changes or improvements in clinical practice, health service delivery and patient care in the community. We also focus on the consumer and the importance of engaging consumers in all aspects of the research process, including having a voice on committees involved in decision-making processes.
Our engagement goal is to achieve authentic connections and partnerships with the community so that the health service accurately reflects and responds to the needs and perspectives of everyone they serve. A key focus point is shared decision-making where patients are empowered to be actively involved in their care, be it clinical or research.