Accessibility     Accessibility |
My DCU | Library | Loop |

☰       Department Menu

School of Health & Human Performance



The Service

MedEx Wellness is a novel community-based chronic illness rehabilitation programme located at Dublin City University, Ireland.  It offers medically supervised exercise classes and educational workshops on nutrition to patients with a range of chronic illnesses.  Currently, programmes are provided for patients with cardiovascular disease, pulmonary disease, diabetes, and cancer.  MedEx also encourages peer support through social activities after class. Since its establishment in 2006, MedEx has grown exponentially to become one of the largest centres of its kind in Europe.  The programme has gained the confidence of local GPs and hospital physicians and has a strong and steady referral base.  Currently, MedEx hosts over 600 patient visits per week.  It has become a significant resource to the surrounding community and truly transforms the lives of individuals (and their families) living with the burden of chronic illness.


The Research

The MedEx model exploits the advantages of its university setting - excellent exercise facilities, skilled staff, volunteer students and a research infrastructure.  This unique location facilitates a ‘living lab environment’ for multi- and inter-disciplinary researchers and practitioners to collaborate and study its impact and implementation.  The MedEx Research team includes investigators and collaborators from multiple disciplines from with the School, other Schools and Centres in DCU, other universities, hospitals, health agencies, government agencies and voluntary organizations.  Ultimately, MedEx draws together specialists involved in physiology, exercise medicine, health behaviour psychology, bio-diagnostics, bio-markers, health-related sensor technology, and chronic illness epidemiology. 

Current MedEx research projects include:

  • Evaluating the effectiveness of MedEx as a public health model for chronic illness rehabilitation
  • PATHway: Technology enabled behavioural change as a pathway towards better self- management of CVD
  • mPATHway: mobile Physical Activity Toward Health
  • Variables associated with MedEx uptake, adherence, and drop-out
  • Effect of a MedEx Move On intervention on cancer survivor exercise adherence, health behaviour change and psychological wellbeing
  • Exercise and Alpha-1 Antitryspin Deficiency
  • Lower body positive pressure exercise in intermittent claudication

The current MedEx research team includes 4 post-doctorate researchers and 7 PhD. students.  MedEx also provides opportunities for undergraduate research.  In 2015, MedEx established a Summer Internship Programme and to date, 32 undergraduate students have taken part in the programme.

MedEx Post-doctorate Researchers




Funding Source


Dr. Deirdre Walsh


Horizon 2020


Dr. Lisa Loughney

Clinical exercise physiology

Health Service Executive


Dr. Conor Kerley


A Menarini Pharmacueticals Ltd.



MedEx Postgraduate Students




Funding Source


Emer O’Leary

Factors associated with referral, uptake and adherence to a community based chronic illness rehabilitation programme

 DCUSport & School of Health and Human Performance


Fiona Skelly

The effect of MedEx Wellness on physical and psychological wellbeing in individuals with chronic illness

DCUSport & School of Health and Human Performance


Mairead Cooney

To examine the effect of a MedEx Move On intervention on cancer survivor exercise adherence, health behaviour change and psychological wellbeing

Irish Cancer Society


Eoin Durkan

Exercise and Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency

Irish Research Council Alpha One Foundation


Orlaith Duff

mPATHway: Development of a mobile phone app for self-management of cardiovascular disease

Acquis Bi


Clare McDermott

PATHway: Development of a techology-enabled behaviour change platform for the self-management of cardiovascular disease

Horizon 2020


Nicola Hurley

Lower bosy positive pressure exercise in intermittent claudication

School of Health and Human Performance



The Vision

The vision of MedEx is to become internationally recognised as a centre of excellence in chronic illness rehabilitation and research.  MedEx is a unique model of chronic illness rehabilitation with a number of distinctive features, including its location at a third level institution, a robust business model, and its shared common infrastructure across chronic illness.  These features combine to make the MedEx model financially viable, sustainable, and scalable at a national level.  Ultimately, MedEx has the potential to offer a sustainable model of centre-based chronic illness rehabilitation and could change public health practice nationally and internationally. 


More details on MedEx and participant experiences can be found at: