Health leaders connect for Queensland Cardiovascular Research Network

9 December 2019

Leading medical experts, academics and government officials will gather to develop a coordinated approach to improve heart health in Queensland and across the world.

The clinical and scientific leaders will meet tonight to strategise their coordinated approach to the world’s biggest killer.

One Australian dies from cardiovascular disease (CVD) every 12 minutes, making it the number one killer in Queensland, Australia and around the globe.

The University of Queensland’s Professor John Fraser and Dr Nathan Palpant are joint Chair of the QCVRN and will host tonight’s event, together with Faculty of Medicine Executive Dean, Professor Geoff McColl.

Professor John Fraser, who heads up the Critical Care Research Group at Australia’s largest cardiac centre in Prince Charles Hospital, said a combined approach by CVD research leaders was needed to strengthen collaborative efforts and put Queensland at the forefront of achieving positive heart health outcomes.

“As clinicians and scientists working in our own areas, Queensland is punching above its weight, but we realise together we are stronger, and that is why a meeting of the hearts and minds of our states health leaders is essential,” Professor Fraser said.

“Only through a combined effort can Queensland lead research discoveries that translate to better outcomes for patients,” he said.

One of Professor Fraser’s former patients, John Coggan, will be at the event to reinforce the vital need for a combined push to improve heart health in Queensland.

Mr Coggan, a Darling Downs farmer, credits the Prince Charles team with saving his life after suffering chronic cardiovascular disease.

“I received a heart transplant in 2005 and went on to make world history by planting a record number of hectares of wheat within a 24-hour period, before donating the money to heart research,” Mr Coggan said.

 “I’ll never forget the day I found out a donor heart was available, you think getting married or having a child is major life event, but they pale into insignificance when you’re offered a heart. One moment you're dead. The next you're alive," he said.

“I am eternally grateful for the extra time I have been given to enjoy my family and life after being declared clinically dead twice.”

The Medical Research Future Fund recently allocated $240 million towards the Federal Government’s Mission for Cardiovascular Health initiative.

The QCVRN will investigate how part of these funds can be utilised to create life-changing outcomes for heart patients in Queensland.

Those attending tonight's event include leaders from The University Queensland, Queensland Health, Australian Cardiovascular Alliance, the CSIRO, the Victor Change Cardiac Research Institute, the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, The Prince Charles Hospital, The Princess Alexandra Hospital, Griffith University, QUT, the Broader Stroke Community, the Heart Foundation and the Queensland Cardio Vascular Research Network (QCVRN).


Media: Professor John Fraser,; Faculty of Medicine Communications,, +61 7 3365 5133, +61 436 368 746.