How HeSANDA is Revolutionising Australian Medical Research

The HeSANDA information sharing process

Imagine a world where medical research doesn’t have to start from scratch. Imagine a treasure trove of valuable data readily available to answer new questions and fuel groundbreaking discoveries. This is the reality HeSANDA, the Health Studies Australian National Data Asset, is creating for Australian researchers.

HeSANDA: More Than Just a Database

HeSANDA is not your typical research database. It’s a national program that goes beyond simply storing data. It facilitates the discovery, access, and sharing of health and medical research data from clinical trials, cohort studies, and other valuable sources. It aims to support more efficient and effective research to help improve health outcomes. 

This translates to several key benefits:

  • Reduced research waste: No more repeating studies already conducted. Researchers can leverage existing data to answer new questions and refine hypotheses.
  • Enhanced collaboration: HeSANDA fosters collaboration between researchers across Australia, leading to richer, more impactful projects.
  • Faster research breakthroughs: By readily accessing existing data, researchers can accelerate the pace of discovery and deliver results faster.

How Does HeSANDA Work?

HeSANDA is a powerful search engine for health research data. Researchers can use the platform by:

  • Search for datasets: HeSANDA allows searching of detailed descriptions for various clinical trials and other research projects.
  • Request data access: Once a relevant dataset is identified, researchers can request access to the de-identified individual participant data from the data custodian.
  • Ensure data security: HeSANDA prioritises data security. All users must agree to a data sharing agreement, and participant data is always de-identified to protect privacy.

Who Benefits from HeSANDA?

HeSANDA’s impact extends far beyond individual researchers. Here’s how it benefits various stakeholders in the medical research landscape:

Australia: HeSANDA maximises the return on investment in research by enabling data reuse for new discoveries and collaborations.

Research participants: Participants contribute to more research without additional time commitment, maximizing the value of their participation.

Research organisations: HeSANDA boosts research reputation, grant applications, and collaboration opportunities. It also enhances research rigor by facilitating reproducibility.

Health services: HeSANDA supports improved research practices and leverages existing data for better service development.

Data providers (researchers who created the data): HeSANDA increases recognition for their work, extends the life of their research, and facilitates new collaborations.

Data users (researchers seeking data): HeSANDA sparks new research questions, streamlines collaboration, reduces research duplication, and accelerates discovery.

Funders: HeSANDA maximises the value of research grants by promoting data reuse.


Who is involved with HeSANDA? 

There are 9 HeSANDA nodes that represent 72 health research organisations across Australia.

Melbourne Academic Centre for Health (MACH) Clinical Trials Consortium Node
Administered by: The University of Melbourne 

Mental Health Node
Administered by: Deakin University 

Monash and Partners Node
Administered by: Monash University 

National Cancer Cooperative Trials Groups Node
Administered by: Australasian Leukaemia and Lymphoma Group (ALLG) 

Northern Australia Node
Administered by: Menzies School of Health Research

Queensland Node
Administered by: Health Translation Queensland in collaboration with CSIRO’s Australian e-Health Research Centre and Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation (QCIF). 

South Australia Node
Administered by: South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) 

Sydney Health Partners Node
Administered by: NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre at The University of Sydney 

Western Australia Node
Administered by: Curtin University


TOGA: Contributing to the HeSANDA Ecosystem

At TOGA, we are involved in HeSANDA through contributing valuable datasets from the NITRO and DREAM trials to further enrich the national data pool.


The Future of Medical Research is Collaborative

HeSANDA is a game-changer for Australian medical research. By fostering data sharing and collaboration, it pavessthe way for faster discoveries and ultimately, improved health outcomes for all.

Whether you’re a researcher seeking valuable data or a data provider looking to maximise the impact of your work, HeSANDA is a valuable resource. Explore the platform, discover its potential, and contribute to the future of Australian medical research.

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