About the ARCH

The Academic and Research Collaborative in Health (ARCH) is transforming La Trobe University’s clinical research capability to deliver better health and social care to Australians.

Established in 2019, the ARCH brings together academics, clinicians, consumers, healthcare professionals, health and social care agencies and policy makers skilled in the translation of interdisciplinary research.

Future research leaders have access to specialist mentoring pathways in clinical research and implementation science. Clinicians at each site also benefit from education and training in evidence-based practice, consumer engagement and the implementation of research projects. Research and higher degree students receive outstanding site-based clinical research supervision and opportunities to work directly with consumers and healthcare partners to ensure their work quickly has impact. Clinical placements offer students valuable experience at the clinical interface.

"The ARCH is about partnerships that deliver better care to Australians," says ARCH Director, Professor Meg Morris. "Our model promotes close ties between research, education, training, clinical practice and consumer engagement. The end result is high quality, evidence-based, science-led care."

The ARCH benefits from La Trobe University’s status as an Affiliate Member of the Melbourne Academic Centre for Health, Monash Partners, and the A+ Research Alliance. ARCH members have access to the research platforms of these organisations, in addition to the La Trobe University’s research platforms.


The ARCH will address major challenges in health and wellbeing by co-partnering with consumers and health industry partners to create and deliver evidence-based interventions, research, guidelines, translation resources and policies.

The ARCH will deliver evidence-informed healthcare that maximises the reach and impact of its discoveries. A key focus will be translational research co-produced with patients and other stakeholders, to optimise quality, outcomes, safety, and the patient experience.

ARCH partners will co-produce knowledge and ensure effective uptake by patients, clinicians, managers, policy makers, researchers, leaders and other end-users.

The ARCH will build research workforce capacity and clinician workforce capability.

The ARCH will mentor future leaders, giving them access to research training pathways.

The ARCH will support clinical education placements and evidence-based, clinician-led teaching at each ARCH site.

Research themes

The ARCH is all about implementation science. It specialises in translational research co-produced with consumers and health partners to optimise healthcare quality, outcomes, safety, and the patient experience.

Its research agenda focuses on six themes:

Aging and aged care
The ARCH’s aging research addresses the challenges experienced by older people, healthcare providers and care partners in community settings, hospitals and residential aged care. Dementia and multi-morbidity are a focus, as well as health professional education and training.

Chronic disease
The ARCH examines chronic diseases such as heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, obesity and dementia with research-informed multi-disciplinary teams and a person-centred approach.

Falls and fractures
Falls and fractures are a major source of morbidity and mortality in the community, hospitals and residential aged care. The ARCH is developing optimal methods of health workforce education and patient education to reduce falls and fractures.

Health service evaluation
The ARCH’s health services research uses the principles of implementation science to evaluate health and social care interventions, policies and service models, as the basis for effective and efficient person-centred therapy and family care.

Maternal and child health
The ARCH strives to optimise health, wellbeing and care for women across the lifespan, and for children. Through a gender-focused lens, it tackles unique health issues related to women including pregnancy, birth, motherhood and menopause.

The ARCH’s rehabilitation research specialises in recovery of movement, sensation, function, quality of life and social roles following conditions such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease, arthritis, joint replacement, cardiovascular conditions and traumatic brain injury.

Discover more about how La Trobe University is leading in health and wellbeing.

Ensuring our research is relevant and benefits Australians is central to our work. We do this by involving the people whose lives we are hoping to improve in shaping our healthcare, and at every stage of our research. The ARCH partnerships actively involve the public, healthcare consumers and patients, people of first nations descent, communities and people from underserved populations.

We involve people in many ways by sharing power in decision making, including setting research priorities, co-designing research and healthcare, and by sharing learning and knowledge to ensure it benefits people. We carefully report who we involve, how and any impacts, using the reporting tool ‘Standardised Data on Initiatives (STARDIT)' (PMID35854364). Reporting this data can help us start to understand more about the impacts and outcomes from involving people. This knowledge enables us to make evidence informed decisions, for example, by comparing which methods of involving people are most effective in different contexts. By using STARDIT, we are one of the first organisations to share data about how people are involved in a way which allows anyone to access and analyse the data. Reporting data in a standardised way across multiple disciplines can facilitate appraisal of methodologies, and aids synthesis of evidence for the most effective ways for people to be involved in initiatives.