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2023 NCWQ Bursary: Stephanie Sardinha

Last year, I had the pleasure of being awarded the NCWQ bursary by QMWS for medical students and junior doctors. I was able to attend a lovely ceremony held at the Women’s college at the University of Queensland. I was able to meet other bright and passionate young women, such as myself, hear their stories and be inspired by their achievements. I was presented this award by Dr. Ira van der Steenstraten, and joined at the luncheon ceremony afterwards by Dr. Lydia Pitcher and Dr. Emily de Mesquita. We also had the honor of meeting and listening to an address given by the Hon. Shannon Fentiman MP. 


This bursary enabled me to attend the Australia and New Zealand Eating Disorder conference held on the Gold Coast in August last year. At this conference, I was able to present a poster on my research that I had been conducting throughout 2023, as part of the MD portion of my degree.This opportunity was great for networking as well as receiving feedback from various members of allied health regarding the application of this research into the future. 


 My project was a systematic review into which educational modalities are most effective in upskilling eating disorder clinicians in their management and assessment of eating disorders. This area is particularly under-researched, so it was incredibly interesting to analyse existing modalities and hypothesise how more interactive modalities (such as virtual reality and simulation training) could be utilised in the future.  Overall, we found that despite the increasing burden of eating disorders on our healthcare system, large numbers of healthcare clinicians across all allied health specialities are under-educated about the specific diagnostic and treatment modalities, such as Maudsley Family Therapy and CBT-e. 


I would like to thank QMWS for this opportunity as it would not have been possible without them. I would also like to thank the entire committee, which I have had the honour of being on for the past few years, for their continued support of medical students such as myself. Moving into my internship and career, I look forward to continuing and further developing my research skills.