FASD Research Australia aims to contribute to the sustainable empowerment of communities, organisations and professionals to address FASD, and reduce its compounding impact on affected children, their families and the wider community. It harnesses the extensive skills and experience of a multidisciplinary research and clinical team and their networks to support high-quality and high-impact research to address three key areas related to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD).
1. Prevention - key focus areas include:
- development of preventative efforts targeting school-aged children
- use of biomarkers to screen for alcohol use in pregnancy
2. Screening and Diagnosis – key focus areas include:
- understanding the impact of different levels of prenatal alcohol exposure on neurodevelopment, including epigenetic mechanisms
- upskilling the health workforce to improve screening and assessment practices
- upskilling the education sector to identify children at risk and refer for assessment
- upskilling the justice sector to identify people at risk and refer for assessment
3. Management – key focus areas include:
- development of interventions to support youth in detention with FASD
- development of interventions to support parents and caregivers of a child with FASD
- establishing the annual cost to society of FASD in Australia
There are two research centres based in Perth and Sydney led by FASD Research Australia's Directors Professor Carol Bower (Telethon Kids Institute) and Professor Elizabeth Elliott (University of Sydney). The research centres host funded projects and provide a solid platform to build research capacity in Australia.