Last month COH Deputy Director, Associate Professor Anthony Smith visited Denmark in his role as Adjunct Professor of Telemedicine at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU).
Anthony’s recent appointment as Adjunct Professor means that over the next 5 years he will make annual visits to Denmark to engage with researchers in telemedicine, health informatics and health services research. The trips will be funded by SDU, with the aim to identify opportunities to collaborate on telemedicine related projects between the University of Queensland and SDU. This will involve joint grant applications, projects, student supervision, publications and teaching.
During his most recent trip, Anthony visited the Centre for Innovative Medical Technology, the Orthopaedic Research Unit, and the Endocrine Elite Research Unit, which are departments within the Odense University Hospital. He also visited the Hans Christian Andersen Children’s Hospital.
Anthony gave a series of invited presentations, participated in seminars, discussed future collaborations and research projects with clinical and academic staff, and spoke with many SDU PhD students about their projects. He delivered a keynote presentation at an inaugural SDU Research Symposium, sharing details about telehealth developments in Queensland.
According to Associate Prof Smith, “the opportunity to contribute to a telehealth research program in Denmark is very appealing. The motivation to do telemedicine is quite different in Denmark because you're not dealing with the extensive distances and remoteness, as is the case in Australia. There is a greater emphasis on the design and development of portable telemedicine devices and mobile apps which encourage self-care and better support for patients in the home. Many of these innovations are likely to be useful in Australia”, he said.
The Danish media attended this event, and produced a story about a current research project where telemedicine will be used in the home to provide support and education to families recently sent home from hospital. The news item features interviews with Danish PhD students and a prominent Health Economist, who commented on the potential benefits of telemedicine.
The COH looks forward to developing relationships with international researchers, including with our colleagues at the University of Southern Denmark.