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Dr Margaret MacAndrew - Nursing and Midwifery Research Fellowship recipient

Image of Dr Margaret MacAndrew

Aspiring gardener, Dr Margaret MacAndrew, has turned her thoughts from growing magnificent greens to propagating a new project after being awarded a $119,606 Nursing and Midwifery Research Fellowship grant.

In Queensland hospitals, early warning scoring systems (EWSS) are used to alert clinicians of patient deterioration where upon prompt interventions addressing related issues, improves patient outcomes. Such systems are not currently used in residential aged care facilities (RACFs). Dr MacAndrew will lead a team aiming to work with RACF staff and aged care experts to develop an EWSS suitable for RACFs.

“Our team are passionate about improving the quality of life and care of people in residential aged care” said Dr MacAndrew. “We want to empower aged care nurses to use their full scope of practice to meet the unique needs of aged care residents through a more effective assessment and prompt action in response to an acute deterioration.”

Dr MacAndrew stressed that it takes experience working in a RACF to truly appreciate how challenging caring for the older person can be. Registered Nurses are responsible for identifying and managing any deteriorations in health status for all residents with limited available resources and supports.

Providing RACF staff with a new tool to improve patient outcomes will support a higher standard of care for our aged care residents.

The team aims to complete this important new research within two years.


Dr MacAndrew is a registered nurse who has practiced clinically over a broad range of care settings, most recently in residential aged care (RAC). She completed her PhD in 2014 and has built a program of research focussing on the care of older people and people with dementia in RAC. Dr MacAndrew has a joint appointment as a Senior Lecturer in the School of Nursing, Queensland University of Technology, and Knowledge Translation Research Fellow for the Dementia Centre for Research Collaboration.
The Nursing and Midwifery Research Fellowships (NMRF) program is partnership between Queensland Health and the Queensland Board of the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia, supporting nurses and midwives to improve health outcomes for Queenslanders through research that:
- enhances the value of the professions through discipline specific research;
- promotes innovative healthcare through evidence-based nursing and midwifery practice and new models of care; and
- contributes to the advancement of nursing and midwifery policy and education.
Last updated: 23 April 2021