Associate Professor Clare Robertson joined the EAG in February 2013 to replace Professor Ngaire Kerse who is on sabbatical leave. Clare is an internationally recognised falls prevention expert who has recently retired after working for 20 years as a falls prevention researcher at the Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago. Clare has had formal training in science, information systems, statistics, and health economics. She has a PhD in Public Health from the University of Otago.
Clare worked closely with geriatrician Professor John Campbell who was already a well known falls prevention expert when she joined his research group in 1993. Their New Zealand based research includes studies of a home safety programme for older people with visual impairment, withdrawal of sedative medications, and multifactorial interventions in the community and in aged residential care facilities. They were responsible for the design, development and comprehensive evaluation of the Otago Exercise Programme, a falls prevention programme for older people that has been adopted internationally and translated into many different languages.
Clare Robertson is a co-author of the Cochrane systematic reviews of interventions for preventing falls in older people in hospitals and aged care facilities (2012) and older people living in the community (2012). She has been a writer and reviewer in the team producing a set of online learning activities for the Commission, 10 Topics in reducing harm from falls.
Clare is passionate about ensuring that older people can take advantage of appropriately targeted, effective falls prevention programmes. "We know that preventing falls will prevent fractures and other injuries, making falls prevention programmes an excellent investment from both the individual and the health system perspective," she says.