Collaborating nationally for chronic disease prevention

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TYPE Prevention Centre News

CERI is the first initiative of its kind, bringing together the Prevention Centre and seven NHMRC Centres of Research Excellence (CREs) with one clear mission: to enhance the impact, profile and value-add of prevention research in Australia through multi-centre collaboration and networking. In addition to the broad scope of chronic disease prevention projects led by the Prevention Centre, the CERI network has helped to coordinate national expertise in women’s health, obesity prevention during early childhood, food retail environments, implementation science, tobacco elimination and falls prevention.

Stronger collaboration and engagement between researchers working on prevention across Australia has the potential to catalyse knowledge about the prevention of chronic disease. It is hoped that by joining forces, organisations will be able to argue for sustained investment in the prevention of chronic disease, said CERI member Professor Helen Skouteris, the chief investigator of the Health in Preconception and Pregnancy CRE (CRE HiPP).

“A continued and expanded investment will see the prevention landscape transformed into one where researchers, policy makers and practitioners are genuinely working together to increase the impact of our research and thus reduce the burden of chronic disease in Australia,” Professor Skouteris said.

Already the CERI initiative has resulted in the creation of a user guide for CREs to effectively translate and communicate their prevention research, as well as opinion pieces published in Croakey Health Media and MJA InSight+ that have given voice to critical prevention issues on tackling obesity

Supported by the Prevention Centre’s knowledge mobilisation and science communications expertise, CERI members meet regularly to find alignment in the policy and practice implications of their work and future opportunities for collaboration. CERI members also focus on building capacity for early- and mid‑career researchers by sharing resources, networks and opportunities across the member organisations. Visit the CERI web page.

This story appeared in the 2020-21 Sax Institute Annual Report.