How we’re helping to cure what ails you

By Nikki Galovic

7 April 2017

A buy hospital emergency department with a patient being wheeled in on a stretcher

Alrighty. We all know health is super important and being unhealthy is bad for us and costs the county money blah blah blah. But ‘what are we doing about it?’ we hear you ask. Have we got the blog for you!

It’s World Health Day today so we’re going to spend a bit of time giving our own horn a healthy ol’ toot. Step into our office as we go in for a check-up on some of our favourite innovations keeping Aussies in tip-top shape.

Now wait just a minute

If you’ve ever been rushed to hospital, you’ll know that emergency departments are often overcrowded and waiting times can seem like an endless spiral of doom – ok well that’s probably an exaggeration but it can be a long time to wait.

While you might think that the number of people flowing into emergency departments at any given time is unpredictable, we found that the number of admissions per day can actually be estimated with remarkable accuracy.

We developed new software tools that use a hospital’s historical data to predict how many patients will come through the doors, their medical urgency and specialty, and how many will be admitted and discharged.

Now we’re investigating how they can be used to help an entire hospital run more smoothly and efficiently, from reducing ‘bed block’ in emergency departments to minimising waiting time for elective surgery.

Get your grain into gear

Happy young boy eating bowl of cereal at kitchen table

We’re making a healthy breaky a breeze

Did you have pizza and ice-cream for breakfast this morning? Sorry to burst your bubble but its probs not the greatest fuel for your body.

Poor diet is a leading contributor to obesity, heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes and cancer. Even if you have a moderately healthy diet getting enough of the good stuff can be a challenge.

That’s why we developed BARLEYmax – a wholegrain with superior health benefits that can help combat cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer.

BARLEYmax is rich in fibre, has a low glycemic index and contains high levels of resistant starch. Eating foods rich in resistant starch nourishes your gut bacteria, which helps maintain intestinal health and reduces the risk of developing colorectal cancer and other chronic illnesses.

We feel you

Looking after your mental health is just as important as looking after your physical health. Almost half of all Australians will experience a mental illness in their lifetime.

Currently, research and potentially life-saving public health programs are based on statistics that may be five years old. But, on Twitter, around 6000 tweets go out every second, offering a huge amount of information that could tell us how people across the world are feeling in order to better understand our mental health.

Our online tool called ‘We Feel‘ is investigating if social media can accurately map our emotions.

Having access to real-time data is of enormous benefit to mental health researchers.

Come on get appy

Smartphone

Our simple app can improve the rehabilitation of heart attack survivors

So smartphones are increasingly being used for good rather than just passing time playing Candy Crush at the bus stop and sending dog-face Snapchats. There are plenty of apps to help you improve your well-being like tracking your fitness or working on your mindfulness techniques.

Each year around 54,000 Australians experience a heart attack. And while majority survive, it’s recommended they undertake cardiac rehabilitation to reduce the risk of future heart attacks.

We developed a nifty app for cardiac patients that they can access on their smartphones or PC to bring the hospital to the home.

Patients record their blood pressure and physical activity in their own time and education, behaviour modification and psychological counseling are also delivered online to help them return to an active, satisfying life.

Find out more about how we’re helping people lead healthier lives on our website.

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