Donate today to support potentially lifesaving medical research.
While the Federal and State Governments have provided significant funds to support hospitals, medical teams, businesses and the community during the Coronavirus Pandemic, donations help us make a huge difference to the development of medical research projects.
The RBWH is the state’s largest tertiary hospital, and is home to many of Queensland’s, and the world’s, greatest medical researchers and scientists. Your funds will help ensure they can continue to break new ground amidst the COVID-19 outbreak.
Medical research projects supported by the RBWH Foundation may include:
Medication dosage for seriously ill patients
Although the majority of people have minor symptoms from COVID-19, some people become critically ill. Researchers are conducting analyses on the impact of severe novel coronavirus infection on levels of medications in patients’ blood and lungs to determine the right dose of medications to be administered. This will prevent side effects and will guide the types of medication and dosage to increase the likelihood of recovering from COVID-19.
Repurposed TB vaccine to protect frontline healthcare workers
All vaccines stimulate the immune system. An old vaccine against tuberculosis, called BCG, has been shown to improve the immune system for at least six months. In this way, it is known to prevent viral infections. This trial aims to show if the BCG vaccine can prevent frontline healthcare workers developing COVID-19 and other winter respiratory infections.
COVID-19 related superbug treatments
Experience overseas has been that a substantial number of COVID-19 patients have developed infections due to bacteria that are resistant to all, or almost all, antibiotics after ventilator use. The research program, led by a team of RBWH doctors, will study antibiotic resistance in Australia, Europe and Asia to determine the best way to treat the superbugs which can follow serious COVID-19 infections.
Projects now being supported:
Ascot Drug Trials
The clinical drug trials (ASCOT), which will test the effectiveness of two existing drugs in patients hospitalised with COVID-19, are open for patient enrolments. Patients are eligible if they are admitted to hospital with COVID-19 infection, but not sick enough to require admission to intensive care units (ICU).
The number of hospitals involved has grown to around 70 Australian hospitals, in every state and territory, and over 10 hospitals in New Zealand. The Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital (RBWH) Pharmacy is currently distributing the drugs needed for the trials to all hospitals involved.
Due to Australia's social distancing policies, there are currently less than the expected number of patients available for trial participation, but this may change over the coming months and the research team are also discussing partnerships with international hospitals where infection rates are higher.
Both drugs have shown activity in the test tube against COVID-19, however, more research is needed to test their effectiveness in hospitalised COVID-19 patients. A COVID-19 vaccine is still likely to be 6 to 18 months away, so treatment testing and development is vital.
What is a clinical trial?
Clinical trials are research investigations in which people volunteer to test new treatments, interventions or tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage various diseases or medical conditions. Some investigations look at how people respond to a new intervention and what side effects might occur. This helps to determine if a new intervention works, if it is safe, and if it is better than the interventions that are already available.
Clinical trials might also compare existing interventions, test new ways to use or combine existing interventions or observe how people respond to other factors that might affect their health (such as dietary changes). The World Health Organisation (WHO) definition for a clinical trial is ‘any research study that prospectively assigns human participants or groups of humans to one or more health-related interventions to evaluate the effects on health outcomes’.
COVID-19 Medical Research Grants
RBWH Foundation has already released, as a priority, a Special COVID-19 Grant Round to fund projects analysing RBWH’s rapid response to the health crisis and subsequent changes to its healthcare practices.
‘Social distancing is controlling COVID-19’s spread but unfortunately it’s not a treatment. COVID-19 will likely infect Australian patients for many months to come.’
Prof. David Paterson - RBWH Consultant Infectious Diseases Physician
If you wish to make a direct deposit (non-direct deposit transactions may incur third party fees) discuss your donation or require any additional information, please contact Nadeyn Barbieri, Philanthropy Manager. Call 0410 011 446 or email email@example.com
100% of all donations to the RBWH Foundation will go directly toward these research or hospital support projects.
All donations over $2 are tax-deductible. If you are unable to donate during this difficult time, please share the RBWH Foundation Coronavirus Action Fund with friends and family.