School of Public Health and Community Medicine

Rebecca Ivers Biography

Head of School Biography

Professor Rebecca Ivers is Head, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, UNSW Sydney, and honorary Professorial Fellow at the George Institute for Global Health. Ivers leads a global research program focusing on the prevention and management of injury. Trained as an epidemiologist, her research interests focus on the prevention of injury, trauma care, and the research to policy transfer in both high and low income countries. She has a substantial program of research addressing the global burden of injury, with a particular focus on inequalities in injury in low income settings, and the prevention of injury in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Ivers has overseen studies examining the burden and risk factors for injury in low-income settings (including Vietnam, India and China). Current global projects involve a large scale initiative implementing community drowning interventions in Bangladesh, (See Project Bhasa: Ending the Drowning Epidemic), and work on scaleable interventions for drowning in India and Vietnam. She also leads work on fracture care and works with investigators from McMasters University on a NHMRC funded prospective study of 40,000 people examining the incidence and predictors of mortality in people sustaining traumatic fractures in low income country settings (www.inormus.ca).  In Australia she has led large pragmatic trials across multiple areas of road safety and falls, and is currently leading NHMRC funded work on burn care in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, focusing on patient outcomes and development of culturally safe models of care. With a large team of investigators, she is now commencing work on a NHMRC funded cluster randomised control trial of a healthy ageing program, the Ironbark Program, to evaluate effectiveness in preventing falls in older Aboriginal people. Her work on development and implementation of driver licensing support programs for young Aboriginal people has directly influenced government funding of support programs across multiple states. Ivers is also an investigator on two Centres of Research Excellence in adolescent health, one focusing on Aboriginal child and adolescent heath (www.crereach.org.au) and one on access to health services (www.why.org.au).

Her work has a strong focus on implementation, sustainability and capacity development. Ivers has worked extensively with the World Health Organization, contributing to multiple Good Practice Guides and global advocacy across unintentional injury. She is currently president of the Australian Injury Prevention Network, and in 2014 was named as winner in the Innovation category of the Australian Financial Review and Westpac list of Australia’s Top 100 Women of Influence. Professor Ivers was awarded the NHMRC achievement medal in 2007, Young Tall Poppy Award for Science in 2008, Australian Injury Prevention Network 2013 Award for Sustained Achievement, the NSW Public Health Associations' Public Health Impact Award 2014 and the NHMRC Elizabeth Blackburn Fellowship Award – Public Health 2018.