Award supports gestational diabetes research

February 15, 2018
Man seated in front of a computer
Dr Shamil Cooray is researching gestational diabetes​.

The Academy has awarded the 2018 Douglas and Lola Douglas Scholarship to Dr Shamil Cooray for his research on gestational diabetes.

Dr Cooray, a medical doctor and Clinical Fellow of Monash University’s Diabetes and Vascular Research Program, was awarded the scholarship to help him complete his PhD.

‘I am very grateful to have been selected by the Academy as the 2018 recipient of the Douglas and Lola Douglas Scholarship in Medical Science to supplement my NHMRC Postgraduate Scholarship.’ Dr Cooray said.  

The scholarship is funded through a bequest from the estate of the late Lola Douglas.

‘Miss Douglas was a great philanthropist with a keen interest in medical research and it is an honour to fulfil her wish to support young researchers. I will complete my PhD research program at the Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation, a partnership between Monash Health and Monash University,’ he said.

Dr Cooray’s focus will be gestational diabetes, a condition that affects more than 1 in 10 women and that is becoming more common. It increases the risk of complications to the pregnancy and may also adversely affect the future health of the mother and her children. There has been little prior research into the best system of education and pregnancy care for women with gestational diabetes, and Dr Cooray will work with women to develop an innovative model for pregnancy care that provides individualised guidance to impact health positively.

The Douglas and Lola Douglas Scholarship is offered as a ‘top-up’ scholarship to a high-ranked PhD candidate awarded a National Health and Medical Research Council Training Scholarship in either Indigenous or primary health care, with preference given to Indigenous health research.

It is awarded initially for one year (currently $7,000 per annum) with funding available for a maximum of two years. The award covers costs of small items of equipment, research materials, travel, or research assistance.

The scholarship is made possible through a generous bequest made by Lola Rachel Maude Douglas.

More information on the scholarship and previous recipients

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