Macarthur residents have top access to medical advancements

Picture: South Western Sydney Local Health District
Picture: South Western Sydney Local Health District

Residents in Macarthur will be at the forefront of medical research with plans to develop a world-class clinical trial centre under way in the region.

The South Western Sydney Local Health District already runs more than 250 clinical trials and wants to significantly expand that number in the coming years.

The district's director of research, Professor Les Bokey, said there would be no medical advancement without clinical trials and the people of Macarthur were lucky to have so many active trials in their backyard.

"Clinical trials are a very important tool in research," he said.

"Trials determine if a drug or new instrument or new model of care is viable and does provide a benefit.

"These trials offer the community an opportunity to seek new treatment and be part of groundbreaking research."

The vast number of trials means scores of locals with medical conditions can be among the first to access new medicines and treatments.

Professor Les Bokey in robotic theatre, one of the many medical advancements that have attracted the best medical minds to the region.

Professor Les Bokey in robotic theatre, one of the many medical advancements that have attracted the best medical minds to the region.

Professor Bokey said a wide range of people was required for clinical trials to be successful and the Macarthur region and broader south-west area provided that.

"You don't want to have a trial with all the same sorts of people," he said.

"That's why this region is so perfect. The population is so multicultural and diverse.

"You need diversity to have a successful clinical trial."

Professor Bokey said the proliferation of clinical trials in the district drew the very best medical minds and investment from pharmaceutical companies to the region.

"Additional trials would not just boost the economy in the district, but also attract the top medical medical practitioners," he said.

"If you're a top medical researcher, you want to do your work in the most advanced place and that's what we're looking to achieve."

Professor Bokey said the district was in the process of recruiting a director of the upcoming Clinical Trial Centre.

He said researchers in the region were already considered leaders in their fields.

Trials already under way cover a bevy of medical areas, including oncology, palliative care, haematology, respiratory, cardiology, diabetes, mental health and more.

Research is considered to be the centre piece of the district's future expansion.

Interested locals can find out more about the district's research and clinical trials at a free showcase next month.

The Health Beyond Research and Innovation Showcase will be held on June 5 and 6 at The William Inglis - Mgallery, Warwick Farm.