If you are interested in having HealthLAB attend your school, workplace or community, please email us.
The Menzies HealthLAB project began in 2014 with the help of its founding supporters the Rotary Club of Darwin. It is an innovative, interactive and educational travelling health program which measures biomedical risk factors for chronic diseases from a mobile laboratory.
HealthLAB aims to directly engage the public, with a focus on youth and Indigenous communities, to educate people about positive lifestyle choices and taking ownership of their health.
Chronic diseases are the leading cause of illness in Australia, with disability accounting for 90 per cent of all deaths. Diabetes and heart disease alone cost the health system more than $6 billion each year.
Smoking, poor nutrition, alcohol misuse and physical inactivity, all contribute to the development of chronic diseases.
Lifestyle choices pregnant women make in pregnancy, can affect the health of their unborn child. Maternal smoking can cause low birth weight and increase the risk of chronic diseases later in life for the unborn child; alcohol consumption during pregnancy can increase the risk of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder; and both diabetes and obesity can affect an unborn child by increasing their risk for diabetes and obesity later in life.
What is the Menzies HealthLAB?
The HealthLAB is a face-to-face experience for participants with a clinical coordinator and trained staff who can discuss chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, alcohol literacy and smoking. A participant’s health is measured against the benchmarks for these diseases using modern technology. The test results and health implications will be explained to the participant in detail by the clinical coordinator and trained staff.
In May 2017, the HealthLAB app was launched and can be downloaded for free here. The app allows people moving through HealthLAB to store and monitor results each time they participate in HealthLAB. The app is currently only available for Apple device users.
Three programs have been designed for specific populations to focus on their lifestyle choices and consequences:
- A secondary school program to target Year 10 students will be developed in collaboration with NT Department of Education.
- A mobile community population program will be delivered in Darwin, Palmerston and Alice Springs public spaces, rural towns and communities, sporting clubs, business corporations and at public events.
- A mobile extended program for Indigenous communities with additional themes at workstations will highlight the importance of hygiene and the consequences of infections which disproportionately affect these populations. A “meet the Indigenous scientist and the Indigenous doctor” opportunity will be incorporated into this program.
Through these HealthLAB activities we seek to deliver the following outcomes:
- To increase awareness in the community about the health consequences of lifestyle choices made today on their later personal health and the health of their children yet to be born.
- To change behaviours linked to smoking, alcohol and the development of obesity and diabetes.
- To immediately improve the health and wellbeing of the population and in the long term, to decrease the adult onset of chronic disease and improve the health of the next generation.
Bookings for HealthLAB are available; email us to find out more.
The Menzies HealthLAB aims to translate research knowledge into action and improved health. It has the potential to positively impact health outcomes over the entire life course by ensuring the wider community, particularly young and Indigenous people are fully informed of the consequences that lifestyle choices made today, can have on their own health and that of their future children.
Menzies are currently seeking funding to develop the HealthLAB program into its full vision as a permanent outreach program for all Territorians to access.
Partnering with Menzies’ HealthLAB provides a unique opportunity to align your brand with Australia’s leading Indigenous health institute, a pivotal agency in national efforts to ‘close the gap’.
If you would like to support this project:
Please contact Associate Professor Heidi Smith-Vaughan via phone (08) 8946 8580 or email.
Donors and sponsors will be featured in HealthLAB's marketing material, reports, communication with stakeholders, and at HealthLAB events.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions HealthLAB has postponed all events until further notice.
For more information contact the team at HealthLAB@menzies.edu.au.
- 12 February 2020 - Darwin High School
- 3-4 March 2020 - Marrara Christian College
- 11 March 2020 - Borroloola
- 13 February - Darwin High School
- 5 April- Darwin High School
- 1 May- Casuarina Nurses Community Centre
- 20 May - Pints of Science
- 31 May - Darwin High School Health Expo
- 7-9 June - Barunga Festival
- 13 June - Casuarina Secondary College Menzies Student Visit
- 18 June - Lowitja Conference
- 13 August - National Science Week: Milingimbi
- 15 August - National Science Week: Parliament House
- 18 August - National Science Week: Charles Darwin University
- 28 August - Casuarina Nurses Community Centre Evaluations
- 30 September – Youth Summit
- 21 October – Borroloola Indi Kindi
- 22 October – Borroloola School
- 22 October – Borroloola John Moriarty Foundation soccer
- 4 November – NACCHO youth conference
- 5 November – NACCHO conference
- 27 November – Robinson River under 5 HealthLAB
- 27 November - Robinson River School
- March 1 | NT School of Distance Education
- March 9 | Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre (MLLLC)
- March 15 | Maningrida - Closing the Gap Day
- March 16 | Menzies Closing the Gap Day
- March 18 | Tiwi Islands Grand Final
- April 17 | Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre (MLLLC)
- April 22 | Youth Week wrap up at the Darwin Waterfront from 3pm to 6pm
May 11 | Marrara Christian College
May 18 | Darwin High School Expo
May 18 | Alice Springs Shops
May 19 | Yuendumu Women’s Centre
May 20 | Bush Football Alice Springs
May 25 | NTSDE Northern Territory School Of Distance Education
June 1 | MLLLC
June 8-10 | Barunga Festival
June 19 | MLLLC
June 29 | Batchelor College
August 3-5 | Garma Festival
August 10 | National Science Week: Xavier College Tiwi Islands
August 14 | National Science Week: Parliament House, Darwin
August 16 | National Science Week: Nhulunbuy High School
August 17 | National Science Week: Nhulunbuy Shops
September 4 | Palmerston Gateway Shopping Centre
September 7 | Palmerston College Special Education Unit
September 8 | Indigenous Tennis Gala Day
September 13 | Ramingining Health Day
Septeber 19 | Parliament House Canberra - Facing North business Mission
November 16 | Flinders University - Charles Darwin University Campus - Medical Students
December 7 | Dripstone Middle School
- August 11 | Xavier College Wurruminyanga as part of National Science Week
- August 15 | Parliament House as part of National Science Week, 9am - 1pm. Open to the public.
- August 16 | Bowali Visitors Centre Kakadu as part of National Science Week, 12pm - 4pm. Open to the public.
- August 18 | Gunbalanya School as part of National Science Week
- September 15 | Ramingining School
- Dripstone Middle School
- Casuarina Senior College
- Taminmin High School Sports Academy
- MLLLC Elcho Island students
- Midnight Basketball, Darwin Basketball Association
- Taminmin High School Sports Academy
- MLLLC Groote Eylandt students
- Taminmin High School Sports Academy
- MLLLC Borroloola students
- Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre (MLLLC) - Wadeye students
- Casuarina Community Health Clinic
- National Science Week tour: Batchelor Institute (Batchelor), Bitter Springs National Park (Mataranka), Katherine Shopping Centre (Katherine), and Xavier College (Bathurst Island) Essington Senior School
- Garma Festival
- Nightcliff Middle School Health Fiesta
- Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre (MLLLC)
- Casuarina Police Station
- Darwin High school
- MLLLC | Maningrida Boys
- Darwin Police Station
- Nightcliff Middle school
- Casuarina Senior school Health expo
- MLLLC | Gove Boys
- May Arnhem Land Trip visiting Galliwin’ku- Shepherdson College, Milingimbi School and Ramingining School
- MLLLC | Borroloola Boys
- Rotary Ladies Long Lunch fundraiser
- Darwin High school Health Expo
Pop-up labs have been transformed to encourage healthy lifestyles and teach communities about how to stay healthy during lock-down and beyond. HealthLAB, a Menzies School of Health Research (Menzies) initiative, is a pop-up lab where you can have an...
A/Prof Heidi Smith-Vaughan, leads a mobile educational training service team in Darwin called Healthlab. She says while coronavirus has restricted travel, social media has opened up access to communities.
Report on National Science Week HealthLAB visit to Milingimbi
Menzies School of Health Research (Menzies) HealthLAB will be in Milingimbi as part of National Science Week.
CDU Open Day |Elite athletes from Territory Thunder will visit the Menzies School of Health Research’s mobile HealthLAB
Charles Darwin University E-news | Issue 2 Monday, 01 April 2019
$6.57 million in extensive and exciting programs to tackle chronically high levels of Type 2 diabetes, and boost health and wellbeing through sport among Top End and Central Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth.
Find out what's new with the Menzies HealthLAB team and about upcoming events.
Australian Geographic July - August 2018 promotes HealthLAB National Science Week event at NT Parliament House.
Festival goers will also get the chance to find out more about the importance of good health and nutrition at the Menzies School of Health Research mobile HealthLAB during the Festival.
Heart Foundation partnership with HealthLAB - NT News report
People living in remote NT communities will benefit from an expanded health education offering through a partnership between Menzies and the Heart Foundation.
The Jabiru community is reminded that the Menzies HealthLAB will be at the Bowali Visitor Centre on Wednesday, August 16 as part of National Science Week 2017.
HealthLAB in Parliament House for Science Week pollies health checks, NT Thunder captain Shannon Rioli calls on the general public to come along.
An interactive mobile health laboratory will tour the Top End between 11 and 18 August as part of National Science Week.
The Menzies HealthLAB will be at the Bowali Visitor Centre on Wednesday, August 16 as part of National Science Week 2017. Using the latest technology to measure participants’ health and inform them about the impacts of smoking, alcohol misuse and diet, which can increase the risk of diabetes, cancer, kidney disease, obesity and cardiovascular disease.
Darwin Convention Centre - The 2017 Darwin Ladies Long Lunch will continue the strong health message promoted by the Menzies School of Health, while raising valuable funds to continue this work in our community.
Darwin Sun | The Menzies School of Health and Research runs HealthLAB, a free initiative that visits public spaces and schools around the NT
In August 2017, HealthLAB is planning to travel from the Tiwi Islands in the Arafura Sea across to west Arnhem Land.
Northern Territory’s transmission and distribution company is helping educate locals about positive lifestyle choices to reduce their risk of developing a chronic disease.
An interactive mobile health laboratory will visit four Northern Territory communities this week as part of National Science Week.
An interactive mobile health laboratory will visit four Northern Territory (NT) communities between 15 and 20 August as part of National Science Week, to spark people’s interest in science and health, and demonstrate how lifestyle choices can impact people’s future health.
Halkitis Bros. invited the Menzies School of Health Research, HealthLAB to visit our concrete plant in June 2015. Personnel from four divisions participated in face-to-face interactions with clinical co-ordinators and trained staff.
The Health Lab teaches Aboriginal children how to look after their health also look at ways to prevent chronic disease in Aboriginal communities through out the Northern Territory. Dietitian Claire Georga from the Menzies School of Health Researchers works with the kids to promote healthy living allowing them to test their heath to give them a better understanding of what is good for the body and what isn’t.
IN a busy classroom on the Tiwi Islands, teacher's aide Stan blows into a breathalyser measuring carbon dioxide from smoke in the body, almost sending himself off the classroom scale. His students dissolve into laughter.WHEN asked, he sheepishly admits to smoking. "You play footy? You'll run faster if you quit," says a researcher from the Heart Foundation.
HealthLAB would like to thank our supporters for 2017:
- The Rotary Club of Darwin as our founding sponsors
- The National Heart Foundation Vanguard Grant
- McArthur River Mine Annual Golf Charity Tournament for the establishment of the HealthLAB Student Ambassador Program
- Belinda Gibson for funding workshops with nurses at Community Health Centres
- The Department of Industry for supporting National Science Week 2017
- Rob and Dulcie Andrews for supporting the traineeship of Susanne Munkara and visits to Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre
- Local community supporters and donors.
For more information contact the Menzies HealthLAB via email