With millions of COVID-19 tests being conducted in Queensland, there is significant need to streamline biobanking processes across the state.

The digitally integrated Queensland COVID-19 Networked Biobank Concept Design Project is a collaboration between Health Translation Queensland and Metro North Health.

The project, led by Professor Janet Davies, is being conducted in consultation with Pathology Queensland and members of the Queensland Biobank Project Steering Committee, which includes broad representation of stakeholders within the Health Translation Queensland partnership and Queensland more broadly, and with the Health Innovation Investment Research Office (HIIRO) of Queensland Health.

The project is aligned with the establishment of the physical COVID-19 Open Access Biobank by Pathology Queensland with sponsorship by HIIRO and the Queensland State-wide Biobank Working Party.

As well as streamlining biobanking processes across Queensland, the project aims to enhance visibility and access by investigators for approved research to quality biospecimens linked to health data and informed participant consent. The novelty of the project is in building user interfaces that enable better participant control over consent, improving sample traceability and linking data, optimising use of collected samples and tracking outputs to strengthen the research ecosystem in Queensland. Ultimately, this will accelerate generation of knowledge and outcomes to improve ways of preventing, diagnosing and treating various health conditions.

This digitally integrated COVID-19 Networked Biobank Concept Design Project is now underpinning a current Queensland Health sponsored collaborative COVID-19 Vaccine Safety and Efficacy Trial (QoVAX SET) pilot-led by Professor Davies as Program Director. Outcomes of the Stage 1 Concept Design will underpin subsequent project stages.

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