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Filling the gaps in the Healthy Skin program

The Filling the Gaps (FTG) project was a collaboration between three CRC for Aboriginal Health partners utilising laboratory, clinical and epidemiological methods and building on work undertaken by the East Arnhem Healthy Skin project and previous work. The four themes of the FTG project are:

The emergence of antibiotic resistance among skin bacteria and drug resistance among scabies mites are two issues likely to be major obstacles to the sustainability of community-based programs. Also of serious concern is the emergence in Australia of community-acquired methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CAMRSA), which has increasingly been found to involve remote Indigenous communities. The FTG proposal supplemented activities aimed at ensuring effectiveness of a potential GAS vaccine that may eventually prevent skin disease from progressing to the more serious illnesses of rheumatic fever, rheumatic heart disease and streptococcal kidney disease.

The primary objectives of the FTG project are:

Over three years the FTG researchers utilised laboratory, clinical and epidemiological methods to evaluate drug resistance levels and to evaluate alternative drugs for scabies, GAS and CAMRSA. All scabies and bacterial samples used come from the seven communities already being studied as part of other Healthy Skin program projects. 

The original project milestones are as follows:

Related resources:
Project leader

Ross Andrews, Shelley Walton



Administering institution:

Menzies School of Health Research