Research ethics and governance

All research involving human participants must be ethically and scientifically reviewed, and approved by a Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) under the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research.

All research conducted by VicHip has ethics approval from The Royal Children’s Hospital Human Research Ethics Committee (RCH HREC) and site-specific governance approval at each recruiting hospital.

The Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research outlines the broad principles and responsibilities that underpin our research at VicHip.

Our activities align with the national Operating Principles for Australian Clinical Registries set out by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care.

Data access governance and requests

VicHip data could help other researchers improve clinical practice and public health worldwide. We work together to share knowledge and build high-quality evidence about hip dysplasia. Our data access governance ensures that only authorised individuals/entities can access VicHip registry data.

The VicHip registry contains information submitted by participating hospitals and practices. We have strict rules to protect the privacy and confidentiality of this information.

All requests to access and use VicHip data for future research projects must receive approval from the VicHip Senior Advisory Group and a low-risk HREC approval from the relevant site/s.

Researchers can submit a request to VicHip to use de-identified data by contacting us at

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 If you have any questions or feedback, or would like to speak to someone about joining VicHip, please contact us

VicHip Study Steering Committee

VicHip is overseen by a Study Steering Committee, which is made up of a stellar team of research investigators. They are a group of highly regarded orthopaedic surgeons, clinicians and researchers at the forefront of hip dysplasia research. They provide governance, drive research design, ethical and responsible conduct of research and the reporting of VicHip.


The Study Steering Committee are committed to building VicHip’s long-term research capacity and impact by providing the following:

  • a voice for Victorian families and children with hip dysplasia
  • respectful engagement with all participants and stakeholders
  • strong leadership
  • a framework for quality improvement
  • best practice data governance and protection of health privacy and personal information
  • best clinical research evidence
  • knowledge translation activities and dissemination of research findings eg. publications
  • health economic benefits and value of information
  • collaborative policy and program development
  • educational opportunities and student mentorship.


Meet the members of the VicHip Study Steering Committee: 

  • Associate Professor Leo Donnan | Coordinating Principal Investigator and Orthopaedic Surgeon, The Royal Children's Hospital 
  • Professor Melissa Wake | Chief Investigator and Scientific Director, GenV, Murdoch Children's Research Institute
  • Mr Richard Angliss | Principal Investigator and Orthopaedic Surgeon, Barwon Health
  • Mr Brian Loh | Principal Investigator and Orthopaedic Surgeon, Monash Health
  • Mr Chris Harris | Principal Investigator and Orthopaedic Surgeon, Western Health
  • Mr Mark O’Sullivan | Chief Investigator and Orthopaedic Surgeon, The Royal Children's Hospital
  • Cain Brockley | Chief Investigator and Sonographer, The Royal Children's Hospital
  • Dr Li Huang | Chief Investigator and Health Economist, University of Melbourne
  • Melissa Formosa | Chief Investigator and Senior Clinical Research Coordinator, Murdoch Children's Research Institute.


A dedicated team supports the VicHip Study Steering Committee; this includes:

  • a Senior Advisory Group to provide central coordination of study operations across all participating sites
  • a Site Study Management Group responsible for the day-to-day management, review of the conduct of research and study progress
  • Orthopaedics Department staff (orthopaedic surgeons, paediatricians, physiotherapists, orthotists, ultrasonographers, nurses and clinical researchers) united to support the best possible outcomes for patients and families affected by hip dysplasia.

Proudly in partnership with

VicHip is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care under the Medical Research Future Fund grant 2015989.

Murdoch Children's Research Institute acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of lands on which we work and pay our respect to their Elders, past, present and emerging.