Keynote Speakers

Professor Ron Shorr

Professor Ronald I. Shorr, M.D., M.S., directs the Geriatrics Research Education and Clinical Center (GRECC) at the North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System—one of 20 US centers devoted to improving healthcare for older veterans.  He is also a Research Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Florida.  Dr. Shorr has extensive experience conducting both observational and experimental studies on healthcare safety and quality, particularly in older adult populations. He was the recipient of an NIA Clinical Investigator Award (K08) and has been PI and Co-Investigator on several NIH funded studies on fall prevention in hospitalized patients.  He has an also an investigator on several Veterans Affairs sponsored studies related to healthcare quality and safety.  He was Principal Investigator on an NIH funded trial which investigated Nonpayment for Iatrogenic Injury and the Risk of Falls in US Hospitals. He has been the lead author in publications in JAMA, Annals of Internal Medicine, and the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, and is a member of the US SPRINT trial team (publication JAMA 2016, already cited 219 times) which made seminal findings when investigating blood pressure treatment targets for older patients with hypertension.

Associate Professor Anne-Marie Hill

Associate Professor Anne-Marie Hill (PhD, MSc is a research academic in the School of Physiotherapy and Exercise Science at Curtin University. She is an APA titled Gerontological physiotherapist (Australian Physiotherapy Association) a title awarded which recognises her expertise in Geriatrics and Gerontology. She was awarded an NHMRC early career fellowship (2012-2015) after completing her PhD in 2011 and has over 78 published or in press publications. Anne-Marie’s interests are in falls prevention, promotion of physical activity among older populations and translation of evidence into practice in health communities. She has conducted large clinical trials in both hospital and community populations and has over $8 million funding awarded. She is now working collaboratively with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers and communities focusing on sustainable physical activity programs for older Aboriginal people in WA.

Dr Elissa Burton

Elissa is a Senior Research Fellow at the School of Physiotherapy & Exercise Science, working with Professor Keith Hill in the areas of Healthy Ageing, Falls Prevention, Dementia and Exercise for Older People, particularly those receiving home care services. Before working at the School, Elissa was employed at the Centre for Research on Ageing working closely with Professor Gill Lewin on Healthy Ageing, Restorative Aged Care, Ageing in Place and Physical Activity for Older Home Care Clients. Prior to this Elissa worked at a state sporting association with responsibility for coordinating participation and player development programs, coach education and funding grants for the organisation. In 2001 Elissa completed a Bachelor of Science in Sport Science, receiving first class honours, and in 2009 a Master of Business in Sport Management (by research thesis). She completed a PhD in Health Science in July 2014.

Professor Jacqueline Close

Professor Jacqueline Close is a consultant Geriatrician at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney and Clinical Director of the Falls, Balance and Injury Research Centre at Neuroscience Research Australia. Her primary research area is falls in people with cognitive impairment and dementia and particularly the relationship of cognitive function to postural stability, falls and fractures. She has an interest in the impact of falls and injury to health service use and the way in which health services are designed to prevent and manage falls and injury in older people. She is Co-Chair of the ANZ Hip Fracture Registry, and Past-President of the Australian and New Zealand Society for Geriatric Medicine

Dr Jennie Hewitt

(PhD, M Health Sc (Sports Physiotherapy), Ba App Sc (Physiotherapy))

Jennie is a physiotherapist with a passion for working with older people. She conducted a randomised controlled trial on exercise for falls prevention in residential care with The University of Sydney, UTS and The University of Queensland. Having previously worked in the sporting sector, Jennie has a keen interest in best practice exercise for falls prevention and quality of life for the oldest old. She has attained a PhD from The University of Sydney and was recently awarded the National Lifetime Achievement Award for services to aged care and a National Commendation Award from the Aged Care Quality Agency.

Sandy Blake

Sandy is currently director of nursing and director of patient safety & quality at Whanganui District Health Board in New Zealand, a position she has held for nine years. In this position she locally developed and led a patient safety programme which is nationally recognised and which significantly decreased the harm from falls especially in those suffering from cognitive impairment within Whanganui Hospital. Sandy is moving in March 2019 to a new position as the General Manager Quality Improvement and Patient Safety in a tertiary hospital in Wellington.

Sandy was the clinical lead for the Health Quality & Safety Commission (HQSC) reducing harm from falls programme for six years, a programme that led the reduction of fractured hips in New Zealand public hospitals by 35%.

Sandy provides expert advice to and conducts national training for the Reportable Adverse Events programme at the \HQSC

Prior to returning to New Zealand at the end of 2009, Sandy was Nursing Director of Patient Safety for the state of Queensland, Australia.

Key Dates

Early Bird Registration Now Open

Abstract Submissions Now Open

Abstract Submissions Close 12 April 2019

Abstract Outcomes 3 May 2019

Early Bird Registration Closes 1 July 2019

Conference 19-20 Sept 2019