Building a simulation model to improve cardiovascular disease risk prediction and treatment for Indigenous Australians

Project Details

Our key aims are to develop computer simulation tools to assist with the evaluation of strategies to prevent and treat cardiovascular disease in indigenous Australians.


This project will primarily focus on developing a health economic simulation model to assess cardiovascular risk and thereby improve the targeting of interventions to prevent and treat cardiovascular disease in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. The project will use information from the Well Person’s Health Check study which collected clinical data on around 2800 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the late 1990s. This will be linked to information on cardiovascular disease obtained from Queensland Health records. Statistical methods will be employed to estimate the chances of cardiovascular disease for a period of up to ten years. The prediction will be based on a range of clinical (e.g. blood pressure) and other risk factors. This will assist in targeting strategies aimed at preventing and treating cardiovascular disease. The project will then integrate the cardiovascular risk equations into a simulation model which will be combined with hospital administrative data from Queensland Health to quantify the cost and outcomes (e.g. increased mortality) of cardiovascular disease. This will be used to inform and evaluate policies aimed at reducing cardiovascular disease among indigenous Australians. Tackling the high rates of cardiovascular disease among indigenous Australians is an important component of closing the gap in life expectancy.

The project is a collaboration of researchers at Melbourne and James Cook Universities and will involve the Apunipima Cape York Health Council and the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area Health Council.


Prof. Philip Clarke
Dr An Duy Tran


Professor Robyn McDermott, James Cook University

Professor Kerry Arabena, Centre for Health Equity, University of Melbourne


NHMRC Project Grant 2016-19.

Research Group

Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Disparities, disadvantage and effective health care, Screening and early detection of disease

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

Centre for Health Policy

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