Brains trust birthday bash

L-R: WARC senior biostatistician Simone Marschner, chief executive officer Tara Czinner, academic director Professor Clara Chow, Resarch and Education Network Emeritus Professor Stephen Leeder, WARC deputy director Professor Julie Redfern, research administration manager Caroline Wu and clinical trials manager Dr Marina Ali.

A brains trust based at Westmead Hospital has celebrated its first anniversary of using research to fight for better health in the community.

Westmead Applied Research Centre (WARC), a collaboration between Western Sydney Local Health District and Sydney University, recently had the cherry placed on top of its birthday cake when Google awarding it $1 million to develop an artificial intelligence program to prevent heart disease.

WARC’s multi-disciplinary team gathered together in the Research and Education Boardroom today to reflect on 12 months of work as a pioneering centre focused on improving population health in western Sydney.

“We have had a successful first year, particularly in terms of funding with our researchers being awarded $2.8m for new projects,” WARC chief operating officer Tara Czinner said.

Professor Clara Chow is the WARC’s academic director.

“WARC is now in a strong position to continue its work of preventing chronic diseases and their progression by helping patients self-manage their conditions.

“Educating and supporting people through digital technology is really key to what we do.”

WARC led projects are in areas of health including cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, chronic respiratory disease, diabetes, childhood obesity, digital health, combination pills, medication quality in low- and middle-income countries and strategies to improve health service delivery.

Prof Clara Chow is a cardiologist at Westmead Hospital and the University of Sydney’s Westmead Clinical School, as well as the academic director of WARC.

Westmead Hospital cardiologist Professor Clara Chow will be the first-ever female president of the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSANZ).