3 March 2023
Marianne Coleman, the NVRI’s Clinical Vision Research Fellow, travelled to snowy Hokkaido in the north of Japan in February. Hokkaido University’s Graduate School of Health Sciences hosted Marianne, Dr Kwang Cham from the University of Melbourne’s Department of Optometry and Vision Sciences, and Dr Sandra Iuliano, a nutritionist based at Western Health and the University of Melbourne’s Medical School.
It was a very full itinerary with opportunities to visit rehabilitation hospitals and aged care facilities, both private and publicly funded through Japan’s Long Term Care Insurance system. Marianne presented a guest lecture to occupational and physiotherapy students about the impact of vision problems in stroke, dementia and Parkinson’s Disease upon neurorehabilitation. Together with Hokkaido University colleagues and allied health students, Marianne, Kwang and Sandra helped to run an interprofessional education afternoon for over 70 allied health professionals across Japan and Australia, including discussion groups about barriers and facilitators to interprofessional education, research and practice within allied healthcare for healthy ageing.
This is a multidisciplinary collaboration featuring optometry, orthoptics, nutrition, physiotherapy and occupational therapy, funded by the University of Melbourne-Hokkaido University Joint Research Workshops Fund. Although it was a busy trip, there was still some time for some fun in the snow, trying Hokkaido’s famous seafood, and of course gifting some Melbourne coffee, Victorian wine and Tim Tams!