Two open-access online resources launched today that will fill significant gaps in wound-related education and research in Australia.
The Wounds Research Directory is a database of Australian wound researchers and an overview of their work that aims to strengthen wound research networks and promote easier sharing of evidence from research.
The Wounds Education and Training Directory is a comprehensive source of ongoing courses in wound care and related fields.
Together, they aim to improve information-sharing and collaboration between researchers and make it easier for healthcare professionals to source quality professional development. Crucially, they are freely available to all researchers, clinicians and consumers.
Both directories are joint initiatives of the Australian Health Research Alliance (AHRA) and Wounds Australia. The Wounds Research Directory was co-led by Health Translation Queensland and Health Translation South Australia, while the Wounds Education and Training Directory was co-led by Health Translation Queensland and Monash Partners.
Wounds Australia CEO Helen Jentz described the directories as ‘a game-changer’.
“These unique resources will help drive wound care knowledge and practice, and provide information to improve the level of care received by more than 450,000 Australians living with wounds,” Ms Jentz said.
Health Translation Queensland Executive Director Professor John Prins said the directories were an excellent example of how collaborative partnerships could translate knowledge into practice.
“These directories have effectively addressed key challenges and barriers facing wound care at systemic, policy and practice levels, thereby helping to reduce the wound care burden in Australia,” Professor Prins said.
Dr Kathleen Finlayson of the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), with Professor Allison Cowin from the University of South Australia, led work on the Wound Research Directory.
“Despite extraordinary advances in Australian wound care research in recent years, there has been limited capacity to share – and therefore build on – these successes,” Dr Finlayson said. “The Wounds Research Directory gives our talented researchers an important way to connect, share their work and learn from each other.”
QUT Associate Professor Christina Parker was instrumental in developing the Wounds Education and Training Directory.
“Our research showed that it was extremely difficult to identify evidence-based, high quality wound care training from the ad hoc courses on offer for health professionals in Australia,” Associate Professor Parker said. “The Wounds Education and Training Directory acts as a single, robust and easily accessible source of ongoing education options.”
The directories are completely open access and free to use and contribute to, and submissions are moderated by a panel of experts to ensure the quality and reliability of entries. The directories are supported by funding from the Australian Government under the Medical Research Future Fund.