Treatment patterns and survival in HER2-positive early breast cancer: a whole-of-population Australian cohort study (2007-2016)
Presenter: Monica Tang
Supervisory team: Prof Sallie-Anne Pearson, Dr Andrea Schaffer, Prof John Simes, A/Prof Chee Lee
Date of PhD commencement: March 2018
Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) demonstrate that trastuzumab improves survival in patients with HER2-positive early breast cancer (HER2+EBC), but real-world patients and clinical practice often differ from RCTs. By virtue of Australia’s universal health system, data is available on all patients who accessed trastuzumab for the treatment of early breast cancer since it was publicly subsidised. In this whole-of-population study, we describe treatment patterns and outcomes associated with adjuvant trastuzumab for early breast cancer in routine clinical care.
Our retrospective cohort study includes all Australians receiving publicly-funded trastuzumab for HER2+EBC between 2007 and 2016. We describe patient characteristics, trastuzumab completion rates, survival and cancer recurrence outcomes, and the impact of trastuzumab completion on cancer outcomes.
Evidence- and theory-based intervention planning to reduce workplace sitting time in Bangladesh
Presenter: Rubana Islam
Supervisory team: A/Prof Roslyn Poulos, Prof John Hall, Dr Husna Razee
Date of PhD commencement: March 2016
Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) were the leading cause of death worldwide in 2015. Commonly known behavioral risk factors of CVD are physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, tobacco use, and stress. More recently, extended time spent in sitting has also been linked to a higher risk of CVD. In general, adults spend between 9-11 h/day in sitting. Prolonged sitting is connected to modern work and lifestyle. The World Health Organization recommends workplace-based health promotion as one of the strategies to prevent NCDs such as CVD. Overall, quality of evidence is low for intervention on sitting time in workplaces and they have shown inconsistent effect. A concern in the space of behavior change interventions is that most are theory-informed, vaguely describing theory use even though extensiveness of theory use enhances intervention effectiveness. This study shows the step by step application of the Behavior Change Wheel framework to develop intervention features to reduce workplace sitting time.
Using the co-design approach for developing and evaluating self-management intervention program for COPD patients in Nepal
Presenter: Uday Narayan Yadav
Supervisory team: Prof Mark Harris, A/Prof Jane Lloyd, Dr Hassan Hossainzadeh, Prof Kedar Baral
Date of PhD commencement: April 2018
Globally, Primary Health Care (PHC) is recognised as central to improving health for all, yet COPD patients in Nepal are not receiving adequate PHC, due to inadequate human resources for proper diagnosis and treatment and a lack of infrastructure. Therefore, there is a need to strengthen the capacity of community-level health institutions and health professionals in facilitating holistic care through linkages with tertiary level health facilities. Our study will be co-designing a model of care, which aims to find local solutions/innovations to the identified problems at the level of the patient, health professional and health system for improving self-management practices. We expect our program to greatly improve the quality of care and COPD patients’ quality of life in Nepal.