Professor Lesley Barclay AM, director University Centre for Rural Health. Photo: Arthur Mostead.

The director of the University Centre for Rural Health (UCRH), Professor Lesley Barclay AM, has won an accolade from the federal government for leading one of Australia’s top-ten research projects over the past year.

The Ten of the Best Research Projects 2014 were selected for their innovativeness and potential to make a difference to the lives of Australians and people worldwide.

While regarded as an essential means of communication between hospitals and GPs to facilitate optimal care of patients returning to the community, electronic hospital discharge letters, or eDLs, are insufficiently understood by doctors, and this is putting patient wellbeing at risk.

This is the key result of a major survey of GPs in Sydney’s Nepean Blue Mountains area, and the findings are likely to apply elsewhere.

The 2012 survey, details of which were published recently in the Medical Journal of Australia was based on an audit of 321 identified abbreviations used at Nepean Hospital.

Artist's impression of the western view of the proposed Lismore Regional Galley

Lismore City Council recently submitted an application to the National Stronger Regions Fund to relocate Lismore Regional Gallery, currently in Molesworth Street, to the ‘Lismore Quadrangle’, located on the old Lismore High School site, in the Keen Street block.

The project will include the redevelopment of the existing C-Block building to contain Lismore Regional Gallery, Arts Northern Rivers (currently located in Alstonville) and the Co-op Bookshop (currently located in Woodlark St). The grounds between C-Block, Northern Rivers Conservatorium and the Lismore branch of the Richmond Tweed Regional Library, will be landscaped to connect all these organisations to create the ‘Quadrangle’.


Dr Ananthanababu Pattavilakom Sadasivan ("Dr Babu") is an experienced Australasian Fellowship qualified neurosurgeon. After his initial medical training in India he spent ten years working in neurosurgical centres around Australia including Monash in Melbourne and Nepean Hospital in Sydney, as well as teaching at Sydney University. More recently he has completed a spine surgery fellowship at Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane. Dr Babu also holds a pain management fellowship, FFPMANZCA, from the Faculty of Pain Medicine, Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists. 

Assoc Professor Harald Puhalla, MD FRACS

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In Australia more than one million people are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and at least two million have pre diabetes.

The rapid increase of type 2 diabetes goes in hand with the well-known obesity epidemic. A strong association in-between increased body fat and insulin resistance was initially described as part of the Syndrome X in the 1980’s. More recently in conjunction with hypertension and hyperlipidaemia, obesity and elevated glucose level were named metabolic syndrome. 80% of patients with type 2 diabetes are obese or overweight. When their diabetes becomes clinically apparent the risk for cardiovascular events rises sharply. In these patients obesity additionally increases their possibility of developing pulmonary embolism, cancer, osteoarthritis, depression or asthma.