Health economics

Platforms for Impact

Promoting value and efficiency in the provision of women’s health care so that all may equitably benefit from high quality care that meets individual needs.

We are working with consumers, health service providers and policy makers to bring health economic evidence to practice. We use routine health data, patient reported data and novel economic modelling to help inform efficient, equitable health care. 

Health care costs are increasing for all funders of care: individuals through out-of-pocket costs, government funders and private health insurers. There is also concern that this increase in expenditure on health care is not also resulting in improved health outcomes or experience with care.

This group is currently working to identify better ways of measuring value in the delivery of women’s health care; identifying and helping implement cost-effective options for care – which either produce better health outcomes or low costs, or both; and helping to ensure that all population groups benefit equitably from health care.

To do this we are working with consumer groups, clinical researchers, health service providers and policy makers to tailor health economic analyses and tools to support decision-making. 

Implementation & Impact

We are working to create more efficiency, equitable and high value health services. In our previous work we have supported the implementation of new models of care that are seeing improved health outcomes, patient experience and reduced costs in women’s and maternal health. We have provided evidence to confirm the cost-effectiveness of new treatment options, including new medications, health services, and staffing options to support government or health service funding.  And we have provided recommendations on how to refine current services to improve efficiency and value.

Research Streams

Our research program is divided into three key domains.

Value based healthcare analyses
  • Domain aim: to identify how best to measure outcomes, experience and costs, and implement these measures to identify current value, and changes in value within health services.

Key projects:

  • Value in Maternal Health care: $400K-NHMRC funded project to utilise linked administrative data to identify changes in costs and health outcomes of maternal health care in Australia.
  • Maternal PROMs and PREMs: we are developing a database of current patient reported outcome and experience measures relevant to maternal health care, to support their integration into routine data collection.
  • Maternal and child health outcomes of women in the Australian Defence Force: we are identifying the birth outcomes, and out of pocket fees paid by women in the Australian Defence Force.


Individual economic evaluations

Domain aim: to conduct economic evaluation alongside clinical trials, or modelled economic evaluations to identify the cost-effectiveness of new treatment options.

Key projects:

  • Measuring cost-effectiveness in maternal health: we are developing a database of cost and quality of life tools that can be used to measure cost effectiveness in maternal health care. We are also developing guidelines to support the standardisation of cost-effectiveness analyses in maternal health, supporting consistency and transparency.
  • Bovine lactoferrin for treatment of iron deficiency anaemia: international, $2.6M NHMRC-funded randomised control trial to identify optimal treatment options, with an economic evaluation being conducted alongside the trial. 
  • Sildenafil citrate for intrapartum fetal compromise: international, $3.4M MRFF-funded randomised control trial to identify optimal treatment options, with an economic evaluation being conducted alongside the trial.
  • Maternal models of care: $1.3M MRFF-funded randomised controlled trial to identify optimal antenatal care models, with an economic evaluation being conducted alongside the trial.
  • Safer Baby Bundle: $5.8M MRFF&NHMRC-funded bundle of care being implemented across Australia to reduce risk of stillbirth, with a pragmatic economic evaluation to determine cost-effectiveness based upon administrative data.


Accordion Equity and Social Value (including education, employment, income & poverty)

Domain aim: to identify the equity impacts of current and proposed health services, identifying who benefits from health care. Here we also capture the wider impacts of poor health and health care, including impacts on education attainment, labour force participation, household income and income poverty.

Key projects:

  • right@home economic evaluation: we are working with Queensland Health to evaluate the cost implications of a new model for delivering early childhood care and support to vulnerable families.


Group Members


Associate Professor Emily Callander Head
Dr Jyai AllenAdjunct Senior Research
Claudia Bull
Lane CarrandiResearch
Curtis HopkinsResearch
Dr Emily OlivePhD
Bonnie EklomPhD
Shae KargerPhD
Hannah JacksonPhD
Ella RaguzPhD

Student Research Projects

This team offers a variety of Honours, Masters and PhD projects for students. There are also a number of short-term research opportunities available. You are encouraged to get in touch regarding potential projects that align with the research areas.

We gratefully acknowledge the funding given to our group by the following groups:

  • MRFF
  • NHMRC 
  • Clinical Excellence Queensland, Queensland Health
  • Children’s Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service
  • Gold Coast Hospital Foundation
  • Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service
  • The Royal Women’s Hospital
  • Defence Health Foundation
  • Ferring Pharmaceuticals
To deliver health impact, we use the following MCHRI platforms