Veterans' MATES

The Veterans’ MATES program is no longer active.

The Quality Use of Medicine and Pharmacy Research Centre conducted this program since 2004, funded by the Australian Government Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA). The program was a data-driven, behavioural change intervention that provided educational materials to health professionals and veterans, and individualised medicine advice to general practitioners. Interventions were provided for a range of health topics including pain, depression, osteoporosis, heart burn and diabetes, and addressed medication-specific topics.

In April 2023, the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (AIC) determined that DVA had continued to provide personal information of an individual to the University for the Veterans' MATES program, after the individual had revoked consent for their personal information to be used for that purpose in February 2016.

As a consequence of the AIC decision, the University asked DVA about the consents held by DVA relating to the Veterans' MATES program.

In August 2023, the University notified DVA that the University would suspend the Veterans' MATES program until DVA could confirm that it held appropriate consents.

On 6 February 2024, the Departments of Defence and Veterans’ Affairs Human Research Ethics Committee notified the University that ethics approval for the Veterans' MATES program had been withdrawn.  Subsequently, the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs asked DVA on 9 February 2024 to close down the Veterans' MATES program.

Enquiries about the Veterans’ MATES program

Development of Evidence-Based Dose Individualisation Strategies

Precision dosing of medicines is one of the ways we can make medicine use safer. The concept of precision dosing or dose individualisation is where doses are tailored to each individual patient‘s needs, taking into account their liver and kidney function, interacting medicines and interacting conditions. Utilising pharmacokinetic modelling and simulation, this research program focuses on providing an evidence-based approach to the appropriate prescription and management of medications in clinical practice.


As people age, medications that were once appropriate (where the benefits outweighed the harms) can become inappropriate (for example, no longer necessary or high risk). Deprescribing is the process of withdrawal of inappropriate medications, supervised by a healthcare professional with the goal of managing multiple medicine use and improving health outcomes. This program of research looks into how older adults and carers feel about ceasing medicines and improving shared decision making as well as the development and implementation of deprescribing guidelines for practitioners.

Psychotropic medicine use in Australian Children

There is global evidence that prescribing psychotropic medicines (medicines that affect the mind) to children is increasing, despite limited evidence to support the efficacy and safety of these medicines in children. This project investigates patterns of use of antidepressant, anxiolytic and antipsychotic (psychotropic) medicines in children in Australia. Of particular interest is psychotropic medicine use in children with autism spectrum disorder due to the increasing prevalence of the disorder, and associated prescribing.