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CAHE’s Dr Saravana Kumar awarded
prestigious national Fellowship
Improving the management of whiplash-associated disorders
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) has presented CAHE’s Dr
Saravana Kumar with the National Institute for Clinical Studies (NICS) Fellowship, co-
sponsored by TRACsa: Trauma and Injury Recovery and the Motor Accident Commission of
South Australia (MAC)
Dr Saravana Kumar, Research Fellow and Lecturer, Centre for Allied Health Evidence,
University of South Australia, will utilise this fellowship to address the internationally
recognised issue of improving the management of people with whiplash-associated
disorders by physiotherapists and chiropractors.
Each year in South Australia, these disorders account for 45% of the 6,000 Compulsory Third
Party (CTP) claims and a third of costs, which is more than $120 million. Internationally,
whiplash-associated disorders contribute to approximately 42% of all CTP claims and this
figure continues to increase. People suffering from whiplash-associated disorders (WAD) are
currently offered a range of costly treatment and rehabilitation options, but despite this
many patients remain in constant pain and develop long-term complaints.
Over the next two-year implementation period Dr Kumar aims to improve patient outcomes
by implementing TRACsa’s new Clinical guidelines for best practice management of acute
and chronic whiplash-associated disorders. In order to achieve this Dr. Kumar will be
working with physiotherapists, chiropractors and consumers. The ultimate goal of the
fellowship project is to address the broadening gap between evidence and current practice
in the management of WAD.
As part of his project, Dr Kumar will assess current practice in the
management of WAD and will provide a multi-dimensional strategy to
support guideline implementation by physiotherapists and chiropractors.
Recognising the growing and importa