Oh what a feeling! Donation brings vital research to remote communities

21 Dec 2020
Oh what a feeling! Donation brings vital research to remote communities

SAHMRI founding ambassadors, David and Jane McMahon of McMahon Services have paved the way for an exciting collaboration that’ll ensure the future of SAHMRI’s Aboriginal Health Equity research in remote communities.

The partnership between all Indigenous construction company, Intract, Peter Kittle Toyota and Toyota Motor Corporation Australia, has enabled the donation of a new Toyota Hilux, that’ll carry SAHMRI’s research team out to remote areas of SA to assist community members and collect vital data.

“Once I discovered that SAHMRI had an Aboriginal health research department that’s focused on bettering communities, I really couldn’t say no to helping out,” Mr Briggs said.

“To have the opportunity to collaborate with Toyota and Peter Kittle on a project like this is powerful. For those businesses to show they care about Indigenous health like we do, it really is special.”

Led by Professor Alex Brown, the team has spent the past 5 years working closely with local Indigenous groups to fully understand the burden of diabetes as well as kidney disease and heart disease.

To date, around 1400 individuals from 18 communities across SA have been recruited to provide important clinical evidence to better respond to the needs of Aboriginal people.

The team is now focused on returning all consolidated results from previous studies to those communities, where they’ll conduct follow up assessments to document developments and work in partnership with services to co-design health interventions that’ll allow for better treatment and prevention of disease.

“This project has a major impact because it shows those living in remote communities that their health is important and the data that’s collected provides a greater overall benefit in improving the long-term health of these communities overall,” Mr Briggs said.

The new 4WD will play a crucial role in making it possible for the team to carry out the largest study of diabetes in Indigenous Australians ever undertaken. The vehicle has been customised to fit a freezer that’ll allow for the transportation of stem cells back to SAHMRI.

The team is now seeking sponsorship to help fund a lipid machine that can measure bloods on the spot, to use on its upcoming tour in early 2021.

Any groups interested in being involved are encouraged to get in touch with SAHMRI’s Philanthropy and Engagement Manager, Rose Senesi: rose.senesi@sahmri.com