First Recipient of the Jo Wheatley PhD Scholarship

The Fiona Wood Foundation is thrilled to announce that Emily has joined our research team as the inaugural recipient of the Jo Wheatley PhD Scholarship. This scholarship, established in memory of Jo Wheatley and generously supported by the Wheatley Family Foundation, provides a stipend for Emily's living costs whilst undertaking a PhD. 

Under the guidance of our senior research team, Emily will focus her studies on smoke inhalation injuries—a critical yet often under-recognized issue in burn care. Occurring in 10-20% of all burn injuries, smoke inhalation is a major cause of early mortality among burn patients and results in severe, lasting impacts on the voice box, airways, and lungs, leading to long-term complications such as airway issues, voice problems, swallowing difficulties, and abnormal lung function.

Despite the grave outcomes associated with these injuries, there is currently no consensus on diagnostic and screening protocols for long-term health outcomes in patients with smoke inhalation injuries. Emily's project aims to address this gap by developing methods to diagnose and optimise outcomes for these patients. Her research is set to be a pioneering study, representing the first in the world to comprehensively screen for medium- and long-term health outcomes following smoke inhalation injuries.

Research studies like this are only possible with dedicated financial support. We want to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to the Wheatley family for their support, which plays a crucial role in investing in and championing the next generation of researchers in Australia and expanding the body of knowledge to improve burn patient outcomes.



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