Medicine student takes out international award

Final year medicine student Kay Hon attended the 19th Congress of PENSA (Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition Society of Asia) in Seoul, Korea where she was presented with the PENSA Best Oral presentation award together with Flinders PhD Candidate Charles (Chin Han) Lew.

The presentation was on Ms Hon’s Advanced Studies research project, which evaluated the rate of catheter-related bloodstream infections (CRBSI) between tunnelled central venous catheters and peripherally inserted central catheters in home parenteral nutrition.

Patients with chronic intestinal failure due to medical conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease or mesenteric ischemia, often rely on home parenteral nutrition to maintain quality of life. This carries some risks including CRBSI, which is one of the most common and potentially fatal complications. Studies have reported on the rates of infection, which vary with different catheter types, and help to inform clinicians’ decisions on type of catheter to use in these situations.

The trip was supported in part by the College of Medicine and Public Health’s Advanced Studies Project and a FUSA development grant.

Ms Hon says that the Advanced Studies component of the Doctor of Medicine has been a valuable platform for medical students to learn and get involved with medical research.

“Through my project, I had the opportunity to enhance my learning in the area of intensive care, clinical nutrition and microbiology which is an added bonus. Additionally, this project has given me the opportunity to publish as a first author in a premier peer-reviewed journal,” she says.

“I want to express my sincere gratitude for the support I have received from the team at ICCU (Flinders Medical Centre) and more so from my supervisor Dr Shailesh Bihari, who has provided me with enormous support in the last three years. This project wouldn’t have been possible without him”.

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