Using Data to Overcome Wellbeing Challenges Across the Life Spectrum

About the Project

This project applies predictive modelling to datasets for useful insights into urban, rural, and remote communities to drive innovation and change in clinical settings. 

The co-designed research will build new data platforms, using obesity data as an exemplar, across the life course and linking it with clinical data from hospital care (from Queensland’s new EMR implementation) as well as population health and community data. It will involve attention to the careful curation of data from different Government departments and services. 

The project will look at case studies across three diverse settings – urban, rural and remote, to determine what datasets are useful in describing population health; what predictive modelling techniques are useful in describing the current and future state of communities and individuals; and how to best engage and impart information to and with clinicians – from primary through to tertiary care institutions – to utilise the knowledge to drive precision prevention practice change that will meet and overcome the growing burden of chronic disease in  our society. 

This project commenced in April 2022 with the recruitment of PhD researcher Hechuan Wen who is based at The University of Queensland. Hechuan is collaborating closely with leading experts in Health & Wellbeing Queensland to apply predictive modelling to datasets for useful insights into communities to drive innovation and change in clinical settings. The supervisory team is led by Chief Investigators Dr Rocky Chen and Associate Professor Hongzhi Yin from UQ, and Partner Investigator Dr Li Kheng Chai from Health and Wellbeing Queensland.

Health and Wellbeing Queensland is the state’s dedicated public health agency, working to drive generational change that improves the health and wellbeing futures of Queenslanders, especially our kids. Their initial focus is obesity prevention and the reduction of chronic disease, through nutrition, physical activity, and wellbeing, and reducing health inequity. To do this they work across government, health environments, the private sector, and communities to partner, create, develop, and amplify policy and programs that achieve real and measurable improvements, so all Queenslanders have the best chance to live a healthier life, no matter who they are, or where they live. 

This partnership with CIRES brings a fresh new lens on identifying and using datasets, with a focus on equity and the social determinants of health, to describe population health in urban, rural, and remote settings.  Using predictive modelling techniques, the current and future state of communities and individuals within the community can be described.  Most importantly, having a people-centred approach will be essential to ensure the story to be told resonates with those communities. It is only through a combination of prevention, population, and partnership that we can disrupt the cycle that leads to obesity and overweight where we live, work, learn and play.