Dr Melanie Andersen is a Research Fellow at the School of Public Health and Community Medicine at the University of New South Wales. She is also an Honorary Research Fellow at The George Institute for Global Health.
Melanie has expertise in the social and environmental determinants of health across the life course. She uses qualitative and quantitative research methods to answer policy-relevant questions. Her focus is on collaborative, interdisciplinary work grounded in public health and epidemiology but informed by fields including sociology, urban planning and cultural studies. Much of Melanie’s work involves working in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and organisations to address community priorities.
Melanie’s research builds on her clinical experience as an Occupational Therapist in hospital and community health settings. She brings a unique combination of sound epidemiological skills, clinical experience, understanding of health systems and a strong track record building community-led programs of research.
Melanie has expertise in the links between housing and health for Aboriginal people in urban NSW. She co-leads a community-initiated partnership project to co-design a housing screening tool and integrated care pathway for agencies providing housing, health and social services to Aboriginal children and families in Sydney. She also leads research about household crowding and urban Aboriginal child health in collaboration with the Study of Environment on Aboriginal Resilience and Child Health (SEARCH) at the Sax Institute. Melanie is an Investigator on several studies, including an Aboriginal community-led child injury prevention project in remote NSW, a study of hospital care for seriously injured Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, and a study of trauma-informed care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women experiencing violence. She is also leading a Technical Report on Falls Prevention commissioned by the World Health Organisation, building on her previous work on hip fracture care in low and middle-income countries.