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From the General Manager’s Desk

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From the General Manager's Desk — Spring brings hope

It’s spring! Spring is synonymous with flowering gardens, rolling green hills and birds chirping in the warmth of sunshine.

Spring means new life bursting in every direction. And with new life comes renewed hope. Hope for a better today and hope for a better tomorrow.

Hope was renewed for me when I was fortunate enough to meet some of the most beautiful children in this country. Children whose plight has been determined by a genetic disorder that will leave them wheelchair-bound by the age of 10, struggling to breathe by the time they’re 15 and likely to die of cancer by the age of 25. There are only 40 kids with Ataxia-Telangiectasia in Australia. Every 6 months we host a “Super Clinic” here at Wesley Medical Research where specialists tend to their health needs, parents appreciate the company of others who understand their predicament and researchers discuss novel findings. Those research findings are just about to be turned into a real medical treatment and I am thrilled that the outcome of that work can provide new hope to these families. With $2.46 million secured from the federal government’s Medical Research Future Fund and Wesley Medical Research’s contribution, a new clinical trial to test this treatment option will commence shortly. I cannot wait for these kids to be given another chance!

It would be remiss of me not to mention the global pandemic that has swept the world and confronted every single person on the face of the Earth. Suddenly, health is our number one priority and the outcomes of medical research have become personal. I hope you and your families are staying safe and well.

When COVID-19 hit, we acted swiftly to identify the capability within the UnitingCare network and enable medical research that will actually change the paradigm. From protecting healthcare workers being infected with the virus, to characterising COVID-19 in intensive care patients across the globe, to understanding the impact of COVID-19 on people with mental health concerns or pre-existing health conditions, to assessing the long-term impact of COVID-19 and finally fast-tracking diagnostic testing – it is all part of our work.

Thanks to the generosity of our donors, $3.5 million will be invested in finding treatments and cures for a range of illnesses and disease.

Thank you for being a part of our journey. Without your generous time, advocacy and support, giving hope and changing lives would not be possible.

Dr Claudia Giurgiuman, General Manager

BSc(HonsIA), PhD, GCertPjMan, P3O, MAICD

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