NACCHO Aboriginal Health News: Kowanyama’s Mums n Bubs Family Health Centre officially opened on Cape York

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“The Centre was being opened in line with community protocol and Apunipima’s Family Health, Men’s Health and Healthy Lifestyles Teams would be working with community over the coming months to ensure Atharpuch programs meet local health needs.”

Apunipima Cape York Health Council CEO Cleveland Fagan

Kowanyama’s Mums n Bubs Family Health Centre was officially opened by Kowanyama Aboriginal Shire Council Mayor Robert Holness and Apunipima Cape York Health Council Chair Thomas Hudson

The Kowanyama Health Action Team, which liaises with Apunipima on the health needs of the community, has named the new facility Atharpuch (ART – AH – PUTCH) which means ‘children’.

The event featured speeches, a traditional smoking ceremony and a barbeque luncheon and was attended by a range of health, government and community stakeholders.

Atharpuch will operate solely as a health promotion and education centre until clinical arrangements are finalised. Until that time, clinical appointments will continue to take place in the Queensland Health facility.

CEO Cleveland Fagan said the official opening marked an important milestone for Apunipima.

‘We are pleased and proud to have officially opened Atharpuch. Investment in health infrastructure in Kowanyama and the Cape is critical to improving the health of residents and we acknowledge the contribution of the Australian Government’s Health and Hospital Fund which enabled the refurbishment of Mums n Bubs building.’

‘Atharpuch has a special room for the Kowanyama Health Action Team to meet and discuss the health needs of the community and share those needs with us. This is bricks and mortar support for the principle of community control which see the community owning their own health solutions.’

Mr Fagan said the Centre was being opened in line with community protocol and Apunipima’s Family Health, Men’s Health and Healthy Lifestyles Teams would be working with community over the coming months to ensure Atharpuch programs meet local health needs.

‘Apunipima runs a range of fantastic health promotion programs including Mum n Bubs Group, Antenatal Clinics and Classes, Men’s and Women’s Groups, Healthy Eating and Cooking Classes, Tackling Smoking and many more. We are in the process of planning our service schedule to best meet the needs of the Kowanyama community.’

Atharpuch is a former Queensland Health facility which was known locally as the Mums n Bubs Clinic. Apunipima acquired the lease in 2012 and spent a number of months refurbishing the building. The facility will host Apunipima, Queensland Health and community programs, meetings and initiatives.

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