Rural Chronic Ill Health


Research Overview

This programme of work investigates a range of chronic health issues impacting rural Victorians, with the overarching aim of identifying ways to reduce the burden of chronic ill health on rural communities. Many chronic diseases are more prevalent in rural areas than metropolitan areas, due in part to increased rates of risk factors, poor health behaviours and increased population age.   In addition, access to healthcare for chronic disease management, particularly specialist care, can be restricted in rural areas compared with metropolitan areas.  

Some of the projects being undertaken by this research group investigate differences in the prevalence and management of chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity, chronic kidney disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease between rural and metropolitan Victoria.   Other projects explore the 'Patient Journey' experienced by a person as they incorporate a diagnosis of a chronic condition into their lives.   Another project focusses on access to a range of health services in rural Victoria, which may be restricted by a range of factors including geographical distance, cost, waiting time or degree of 'fit' between the service and the consumer.


Dr. Kristen Glenister, Research Fellow

Dr. Daniel Terry, Research Fellow

Prof. Julian Wright

Prof. Lisa Bourke

Dr. Christina Malatzky, Research Fellow

A/Prof. David Pierce

Dr. Andrew Hamilton


St. Vincent's Hospital, Melbourne

Victorian Data Linkage

Goulburn Valley Health

Northeast Health Wangaratta


This research has been supported by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing through the University Department of Health (UDRH) and Rural Clinical Training and Support (RCTS) programs.

Research Outcomes

Ervin K, Pallant J, Terry DR, Bourke L, Pierce D, Glenister K. A Descriptive Study of Health, Lifestyle and Sociodemographic Characteristics and their Relationship to Known Dementia Risk Factors in Rural Victorian Communities. AIMS Medical Science. 2015 2(3):246.

Terry DR, Glenister K, Kilmartin J, Kilmartin G, Sands R, Fowler F, Wright J. Glycaemic Control among Rural Health Consumers: A Retrospective Study of a Diabetes Center. Advances in Diabetes and Metabolism. 2015 3(2), 11-15.

Ranson NE, Terry DR, Glenister K, Adam BR, Wright J. Integrated and consumer-directed care: a necessary paradigm shift for rural chronic ill health. Aust J Prim Health. 2016 22(3): 176-180.

Research Projects

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact Research Fellow Dr. Kristen Glenister

Department / Centre

Rural Health

Unit / Centre

Rural Chronic Ill Health

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