If you are interested in having HealthLAB attend your school, workplace or community, please email us.

Introduction:

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.

Background:

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:

  1. A secondary school program to target Year 10 students will be developed in collaboration with NT Department of Education.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.

Summary:

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.

2019 events:
  • February 13th- Darwin High School
  • April 5th- Darwin High School
  • May 1st- Casuarina Nurses Community Centre
  • May 20th- Pints of Science
  • May 31st- Darwin High School Health Expo
  • June 7th- 9th – Barunga Festival
  • June 13th- Casuarina Secondary College Menzies Student Visit
  • August 13th- Nation Science Week: Milingimbi
  • August 15th- Nation Science Week: Parliament House
  • August 18th- Nation Science Week: Charles Darwin University
  • August 28th- Casuarina Nurses Community Centre Evaluations  
  • September 27th- Darwin Middle School Health Expo
2018 events:
  • 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

2017 events:
  • 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
2016 events:
  • 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 
  1. Sport a boost to Menzies Indigenous health research

    Sport a boost to Menzies Indigenous health research

    Date

    Charles Darwin University E-news | Issue 2 Monday, 01 April 2019

  2. $6.57 MILLION TO KICK GOALS FOR YOUTH AND DIABETES HEALTH

    $6.57 MILLION TO KICK GOALS FOR YOUTH AND DIABETES HEALTH

    Date

    $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.

  3. HealthLAB newsletter | July 2018

    HealthLAB newsletter | July 2018

    Date

    Find out what's new with the Menzies HealthLAB team and about upcoming events.

  4. HealthLAB in Australian Geographic

    HealthLAB in Australian Geographic

    Date

    Australian Geographic July - August 2018 promotes HealthLAB National Science Week event at NT Parliament House.

  5. Barunga cuts sugar for festival

    Barunga cuts sugar for festival

    Date

    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.

  6. Heart Foundation partnership with HealthLAB - NT News

    Heart Foundation partnership with HealthLAB - NT News

    Date

    Heart Foundation partnership with HealthLAB - NT News report

  7. HealthLAB expands educational offering through Heart Foundation partnership

    HealthLAB expands educational offering through Heart Foundation partnership

    Date

    People living in remote NT communities will benefit from an expanded health education offering through a partnership between Menzies and the Heart Foundation.

  8. West Arnhem Wire | HealthLAB in Jabiru

    West Arnhem Wire | HealthLAB in Jabiru

    Date

    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.

  9. NT News - Menzies HealthLAB at Parliament House

    NT News - Menzies HealthLAB at Parliament House

    Date

    HealthLAB in Parliament House for Science Week pollies health checks, NT Thunder captain Shannon Rioli calls on the general public to come along.

  10. Mobile health lab aims to reduce chronic disease during National Science Week

    Date

    An interactive mobile health laboratory will tour the Top End between 11 and 18 August as part of National Science Week.

  11. Menzies HealthLAB to visit Bowali Visitor Centre

    Menzies HealthLAB to visit Bowali Visitor Centre

    Date

    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.

  12. Ladies Long Lunch | HealthLAB fundraiser

    Ladies Long Lunch | HealthLAB fundraiser

    Date

    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.

  13. Check-up gives health insight - HealthLAB

    Check-up gives health insight - HealthLAB

    Date

    Darwin Sun | The Menzies School of Health and Research runs HealthLAB, a free initiative that visits public spaces and schools around the NT

  14. Menzies HealthLAB National Science Week Grant

    Menzies HealthLAB National Science Week Grant

    Date

    In August 2017, HealthLAB is planning to travel from the Tiwi Islands in the Arafura Sea across to west Arnhem Land.

  15. Promoting health and wellbeing in remote communities

    Promoting health and wellbeing in remote communities

    Date

    Northern Territory’s transmission and distribution company is helping educate locals about positive lifestyle choices to reduce their risk of developing a chronic disease.

  16. Mobile health lab to visit remote communities

    Mobile health lab to visit remote communities

    Date

    An interactive mobile health laboratory will visit four Northern Territory communities this week as part of National Science Week.

  17. Mobile health lab aims to reduce chronic disease during National Science Week

    Mobile health lab aims to reduce chronic disease during National Science Week

    Date

    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.

  18. HealthLAB meets Halkitis

    HealthLAB meets Halkitis

    Date

    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.

  19. Health Lab promotes healthy living in the NT

    Health Lab promotes healthy living in the NT

    Date

    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.

  20. Lab teaches remote kids healthy living

    Lab teaches remote kids healthy living

    Date

    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