The Southgate Institute organised a special seminar with Prof. Katina D’Onise, Director of the Prevention and Population Health Branch in SA Health, to present on this newly established branch, on Monday 11th December 2017.
The focus of the Prevention and Population Health Branch is on prevention, health promotion and population health. Its key functions include developing disease prevention and health promotion partnerships and policy, and working in partnership with other parts of SA Health and across government to develop and deliver public health initiatives and programs. It coordinates reporting under the South Australian Public Health Act 2011, leads the development of the Chief Public Health Officer’s Report, and contributes to the development of the State Public Health Plan. The branch also collects, manages, and reports population health data, including for the South Australian Cancer Registry, Perinatal Outcomes, Abortion Registry, Population Health Surveillance System and ongoing central support for the South Australian Trauma Registry.
The seminar was a fruitful opportunity to learn about the plans and priorities of the new branch, and also to discuss the contribution research can make to the functioning of public health in the state. In particular, the potential benefits of applied research that identifies already known research findings on health outcomes, and works to translate these into policy and real world outcomes were noted. As an example of this, Prof. D’Onise mentioned Dr. Ron Somers’ work developing a tool to measure mattress firmness, to allow standards to be introduced for cot mattresses to reduce the occurrence of sudden infant deaths.
Prof. D’Onise emphasised the branch’s commitment to focusing on equity, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, and on upstream social determinants of health, citing the Health in All Policies initiative on which Southgate Institute is conducting research a workplace health strategy partnering with industry, and a nature and health project partnering with the Department of Environment, Natural Resources and Water.
Prof. D’Onise’s slides are available by contacting email@example.com.