Research Questions

The study research questions were developed by the Department of Health and Human Services in discussion with the study team, and are based upon the community consultations which were held in Morwell in May 2014.

These research questions are:

  1. Is there evidence that people in general, and susceptible sub-populations in particular, who were heavily exposed to emissions from the Hazelwood fire, compared with otherwise similar people who were minimally exposed to emissions from the fire:
    1. currently have clinical or sub-clinical cardiovascular or, respiratory conditions that could be associated with clinically important adverse health consequences in the future?
    2. over time develop clinical or sub-clinical cardiovascular or respiratory conditions that could be associated with clinically important adverse health consequences in the future?
  2. Is there evidence of any difference in birth weight of babies born to mothers heavily exposed to emissions from the Hazelwood fire, compared to babies born to otherwise similar mothers who were minimally exposed to emissions from the fire?
  3. Is there evidence of any difference in the health and development of children heavily exposed to emissions from the Hazelwood fire, compared to children who were minimally exposed to emissions from the fire?
  4. Is there evidence that people in general and susceptible sub-populations in particular (including children) who were heavily exposed to emissions from the Hazelwood fire, compared with otherwise similar people who were minimally exposed to emissions from the fire, have a higher prevalence and persistence of psychological distress?
  5. What sociodemographic factors and exposure levels are associated with higher levels and persistence of psychological distress?
  6. Is there evidence that people who were heavily exposed to emissions from the Hazelwood fire, compared with otherwise similar people who were minimally exposed to emissions from the fire, have a higher incidence of malignant disease over a prolonged period of follow-up?