NACCHO Aboriginal Health Members Deadly News : 10 Great reasons our ACCHO’s #ClosetheGap @closethegapOZ Features @WinnungaACCHO @ATSICHSBris @DeadlyChoices @awabakalltd @CAACongress @TheAHCWA #NT #NSW #QLD #WA #VIC #ACT #SA

1.1 : National : Close the Gap Day: a greater role for Aboriginal community controlled health services essential

1.2 : Ten Close the Gap reasons Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services are more than just another health service.

2.1 NSW : Sydney Close the Gap Picnic Breakfast event Surry Hills event.

2.2:  NSW : Awabakal ACCHO Close the Gap event : Expanding services to the Port Stephens community.

2.3: NSW : Ready Mob and Galambila help Close the Gap at Bowraville Indigenous Health Workforce Expo

3.1 NT : Danila Dilba ACCHO Close the Gap event Darwin

3.2 NT : Congress Alice Springs and CASSE Close the Gap _- Aboriginal Male Health

4.WA AHCWA is hosting a Close the Gap Family Festival!

6.1 :  QLD ATSICHS Brisbane team helps to Close the Gap at the women’s fun run

6.2 QLD : Telehealth closes the gap on Indigenous health in Queensland

7. Vic : VAHS is holding an event /Health checks for Closing the Gap Day.

8. SA : Port Power and Deadly Choices support Aboriginal Health checks to Close the Gap

9.Tas: Close the gap Events see link below

1.National : Close the Gap Day: a greater role for Aboriginal community controlled health services essential

Close the Gap Day is a day to acknowledge the critical role Aboriginal medical services and health professionals must play in turning around the significant health gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation said today.

Besides events below find the nearest CTG event near you

After a decade of the Close the Gap campaign, programs and projects managed by Aboriginal services on the ground in local communities are the only model proven to be making inroads in closing the Indigenous health gap.

Watch the new 2018 CTG video here

The evidence tells us that Aboriginal people respond best to health care provided by Aboriginal people or controlled by the Aboriginal community.

At least one-third of the health gap can be attributed to the social and cultural determinants of health.

If we are serious about improving health outcomes for Aboriginal people, governments at all levels must do more to join the dots between education, housing, employment and other determinants and make sure that Indigenous led solutions are at the centre of strategies that make those links.”

10 reasons Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services are more than just another health service.

Download the 10 Key ACCHO facts with graphics and references

Key 10 facts-why-ACCHS-are-needed-FINAL

1.NACCHO puts Aboriginal health in Aboriginal hands


2.We are around for the long haul — commitment and continuity are required to close the gap

Our first members have been around since the very early 1970s. Our roots are deep. We have endured as a high quality, clinically accredited community controlled service for over forty years. As the health system becomes more complex, the role of our services becomes even more critical. The Indigenous population is also increasing rapidly, yet funding levels have not kept pace with demand.

3.We punch above our weight:

Aboriginal controlled health services provide about three million episodes of care each year for about 350,000 people. In very remote areas, our services provided about one million episodes of care in 2015-16.1

4.Our customers trust us with their health

Our services build ongoing relationships to give continuity of care so that chronic conditions are managed and preventative health care can be effectively targeted. Studies have shown that Aboriginal controlled health services are 23% better at attracting and retaining Aboriginal clients than mainstream providers.2 Through local engagement and a proven service delivery model, our clients ‘stick’. The cultural safety in which we provide our services is a key factor of our success.

More people are using Aboriginal controlled health services. It is reported that in the 24 months to June 2015, our services increased their primary health care services, with the total number of clients rising by 8% (from 316,269 to 340,299).3 A map showing the footprint of our clients is attached.

5.We are proven to be clinically effective

 As recently reported in the Australian Health Review (March 2017), we are more effective than other health services at improving Indigenous health.4 Our services specialize in providing comprehensive primary care consistent with our clients’ needs.

This includes: home and site visits; provision of medical, public health and health promotion services; allied health, nursing services; assistance with making appointments and transport; help accessing child care or dealing with the justice system; drug and alcohol services; and providing help with income support. This is funded by both State and Australian Governments.

6.We provide value for money

Aboriginal controlled health services are cost-effective. Our activities result in greater health benefits per dollar spent; measured at a value of $1.19:$1. The lifetime health impact of interventions delivered by our services is 50% greater than if these same interventions were delivered by mainstream health services, primarily due to improved Indigenous access.5

All revenue is re-invested into our health services. There is no profit-taking. We reinvest in our Indigenous workforce and in locally-designed strategies to trial new approaches. We are part of Indigenous communities and understand how critical respectful community engagement is to improving health outcomes.

We have a high level of community oversight and accountability. Our boards are made up of local Indigenous people and we serve our communities. We are responsive to their needs and they are not shy to tell us to lift our game, if we disappoint. We have innovative, robust and flexible service models grounded in the culture of our people and contemporary primary health care practices.

7.Governments and communities have invested in the sector and have grown it over time — it is a valuable health asset

Our community controlled health services are an integral part of the Australian health system just as hospitals are. An exemption under section 19(2) of the Health Insurance Act 1973 allows Aboriginal controlled health services access to Commonwealth funding, even if they are funded by state governments.6 This flexibility allows all parties to work closely together to provide the full service offer and get the best outcomes according to local need and circumstances.

There are many examples of important partnerships between our services and mainstream providers working collaboratively to maximize impact. For example, in Western NSW, the roll-out of a new partnership saw the number of Aboriginal people using integrated care services for chronic conditions more than double in the space of just four months.7

The health system is increasingly complex in nature and the dire state of Indigenous health has meant that Aboriginal people need to have control over their own health response and be part of the solution. We work closely with mainstream services to extend the reach of services and share our expertise to improve cultural safety.

While governments struggle to deliver service models that rarely reach or effectively service the needs of the most vulnerable Aboriginal people, we excel. That’s because we are Aboriginal people who understand what is required to change the future health of our people and we deliver it.

6.Most of our staff are Indigenous, but we need more Indigenous clinical staff

Our network provides a critical and practical pathway into employment for many Indigenous people. Currently, 56% of our staff are Indigenous. The greater representation is amongst non-clinical staff.

Much more needs to be done to develop viable career pathways to get more Indigenous doctors, nurses and allied health professionals. Across Australia, there are only about 170 Indigenous medical practitioners, 730 allied health professionals, and 2,190 nurses.8

Source: Healthy Futures

9.We are the largest employer of Indigenous people

Our 141 Aboriginal controlled health services employ about 6,000 staff (most of whom are Indigenous). This means that one out of every 44 Indigenous jobs in Australia is with one of our services (3,300 of 141,400 FTE: 2.33%). This puts us well ahead of all mining employers. This is in a context where the health and social care sector employs 15% of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workforce; almost four times as many as the mining industry (4%).9

Our large network of services is also critical to the economic health of many remote and local communities.

10.The need is compelling

Good progress has been made, but Indigenous health is still vulnerable to disturbing developments such as the recent outbreak of congenital syphilis across regions of Northern Australia.

This is an entirely preventable disease not seen in Australia for generations and its occurrence raises concerns about the delivery of antenatal care and sexually transmitted infection and blood borne virus control programs for all high risk groups.

2.1 NSW : Sydney Close the Gap Picnic Breakfast event Surry Hills event

2.2 NSW : Awabakal ACCHO Close the Gap event : Expanding services to the Port Stephens community

To celebrate National Close The Gap day on Thursday 15th March, Awabakal is excited to announce that we are expanding our services to the Port Stephens community.

You are invited to the grand opening of our Raymond Terrace site!!

88 Port Stephens St Raymond Terrace
Thursday 15th March @ 11:30am.

This is our contribution to close the health and life expectancy gap between the Aboriginal and the non-Indigenous communities in our area.

We look forward to working with you and your family towards a healthier community.

2.3: NSW : Ready Mob and Galambila help Close the Gap at Bowraville Indigenous Health Workforce Expo. #FutureHealthChampions

The Ready Mob and Galambila ACCHO Coffs Harbour was pleased to participate in the Indigenous health workforce expo at the Bowraville Central School on Friday, 9 March. Pictured above with Karl Briscoe CEO NATSIHWA

This event was a first for a number of peak Aboriginal Health bodies and stakeholders that informed and inspired Indigenous students and their families in Bowraville and surrounding areas to pursue careers in health.

See ABC Media Coverage HERE

Indigenous health expo teaches students about what it takes to don scrubs for a career in medicine

Alongside the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives (CATSINaM), Indigenous Allied Health Australia (IAHA), the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker Association (NATSIHWA) and the Mid North Coast Local Health District (MNCLHD), AIDA had more than 30 Indigenous doctors, nurses, midwives, nutritionists, and physiotherapists attending the school to deliver activities demonstrating some of the day-to-day procedures that occur in their respective fields.

Through applying plaster casts, delivering a mannequin baby, operating on organs and participating in pre-game exercises undertaken by players from the St Kilda and Melbourne Victory teams, showed students the variety of jobs available to them if they embark on careers in health.

CATSINaM CEO Janine Mohamed says “building the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce through targeted investment in our young people is critical to closing the gap on health disadvantage – we are proud to be part of an initiative that works with our communities in delivering a tailored approach to health education and training pathways”.

NATSIHWA CEO Karl Briscoe is proud to participate in the event, which will showcase what is possible for the Aboriginal youth of Bowraville who wish to commence a career in the health sector. “There are many pathways for our youth and we are thrilled to help foster and support our next generation of Aboriginal Health Workers and Aboriginal Health Practitioners”.

IAHA Chairperson Nicole Turner says “we know that if we want to see long-term sustainable change to health outcomes, we need a strong representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health practitioners and workers across the many diverse careers in health. Engaging our young people and sharing the amazing opportunities available is part of growing that health workforce into the future”.

AIDA President Dr Kali Hayward says “it is so encouraging that we have so many people, organisations, families and community members supporting this important event. We are really excited to bring Indigenous health workers into the community to engage with students about the many options they have regarding careers in health”.

The MNCLHD has been instrumental in pulling this event together at the local level and engaging with the community to ensure this event is a success for everyone who attends. It is inspiring to see this level of enthusiasm in the community.

3.1 NT : Danila Dilba ACCHO Close the Gap event Darwin

Today 15 March is Close The Gap day. From 9:30AM to 11AM Danila Dilba will be at Stuart Park Pharmacy, 4/5 Westralia St, Stuart Park.

There will be food and giveaways supplied by the pharmacy. Danila Dilba will have information stalls and Hearing Australia will be there as well doing free hearing checks.

Radio Larrakia will also be broadcasting live from the event. Come on down tomorrow for this important day.

3. 2 NT : Congress Alice Springs and CASSE Close the Gap _- Aboriginal Male Health

” Establishing a male leadership group, having a place for males and addressing violence have been identified as key priorities in a research project to investigate ways to develop a best practice Aboriginal Men’s Shed in Alice Springs.

The Kurruna Mwarre-Ingkintja (Good Spirit Males Place) Research Project, a collaboration between the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (Congress) and Creating A Safe Supportive Environment (CASSE) – commenced in 2015 with the aim of developing a unique Aboriginal Men’s Shed Model, along cultural lines, to empower men to find their voices and live authentically.

For two years prior, many consultations were held with Aboriginal men and communities to determine the direction and need for pending research. The research has been philanthropically funded.”

The completed research report was launched at THE OLD COURTHOUSE, ALICE SPRINGS




Read over 342 Aboriginal Male Health articles published by NACCHO in last 6 Years

Ken Lechleitner Pangarte, the primary Researcher Officer, is an Anmatjere and Western Arrernte man with a cultural reputation for being able to move between the two worlds and for being an advocate for change for his people.

On establishing a male leadership group, Ken said: “This group of males shaped the direction of where the research should go, not to the bookshelves to gather dust, but create an entity to ensure findings are implemented into becoming outcomes.”

The group identified the need for new Aboriginal organisations, while operating alongside, and to provide a place for men to go to receive the physical, social and psychological support they need to get their lives on track, leading to establishment of the Blokes On Track Aboriginal Corporation (BOTAC).

“Establishing BOTAC was a breakthrough in finding a solution to engaging multiple services and these services have indicated that they would be happy working with a mutual body like BOTAC providing the required male leadership,” Ken stated.

The project included qualitative research interviews with 23 male participants living in Alice Springs that illuminated critical aspects of men’s experiences. Fourteen of the men agreed to have their interviews on public record and are published in “Talking Powerfully from the Heart – Interviews by Ken Lechleitner”, providing a moving adjunct to the research report.

“Their interviews brought to light and to life new found voices for males from central Australia,” Ken said.

Pamela Nathan, Director of CASSE’s Aboriginal Australian Relations Program, Senior Investigator, co-supervised the project and stated that the interviews “illuminated critical aspects of men’s experiences. Their recognition of the degree to which they have unmet emotional and psychological needs was striking – an aspect of their experience that seemed unrecognised by the wider public.

“The men say they hide their feelings that ‘they hurt, they bleed they have pain’, ‘all suffering’, feel ‘degraded and scorned’, ‘disempowered’, ‘lost’, ‘devalued’ and ‘unrecognised,’ seen as ‘violent losers’ and more.”

A key component of the project was trialling the psychoanalytically informed 15week ‘BreakThrough Violence’ group treatment program for the prevention and treatment of violence. The program privileges cultural and emotional experiences.

The summary of participants in the group program is an indictment of the system –many of the men were repeat violent offenders and many had not before received treatment for violence, let alone treatment in a culturally appropriate manner:

  • 32 men regularly participated in the weekly program
  • over two thirds (23 men) had not attended a violence treatment program before
  • nearly all (30) of the men were mandated
  • over two-thirds (20 men) had committed violent offences
  • 21 of the men had been in gaol before
  • 15 had been in gaol at least twice if not more often.
  • 5 of the men had been in gaol over five times.
  • 23 of the men were substance affected at the time of the offence.
  • The majority of men were aged between 20 and 40
  • Half the men lived in remote communities, with slightly less living in town
  • 30 out of the 34 men said they found the group helpful.

“These statistics reinforce the comment made last year by the Northern Territory Coroner Greg Cavanagh that “the current focus on policing and punishments are not providing the answer to the NT’s domestic violence problem””, said Pamela and Ken.

Final recommendations from the Kurruna Mwarre-Ingkintja Research Project report include:

  1. Establish a services agreement between Non-Government and Government Organisations through Blokes On Track Aboriginal Corporation (BOTAC)
  2. Establishment of Male Cultural Place
  3. Establishment of Psychological Place Health Retreat
  4. Men’s Residential area
  5. Chronic Disease Care Management services to be provided into the Male place
  6. Palliative Care Services on Country
  7. Establish a lease agreement with Iwupataka Land Trust
    7.1 Public Space area
    7.2 Restaurant / Café
    7.3 Market Place

For over 40 years, Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (Congress) has provided support and advocacy for Aboriginal people in the struggle for justice and equity. Since that time, Congress has expanded to become the largest Aboriginal community-controlled health organisation in the Northern Territory, providing a comprehensive, holistic and culturally-appropriate primary health care service to Aboriginal people living in and nearby Alice Springs, including five remote communities; Amoonguna, Ntaria (and Wallace Rockhole), Santa Teresa, Utju (Areyonga) and Mutitjulu. Today, we are one of the most experienced Aboriginal primary health care services in the country, a strong political advocate of closing the gap on Aboriginal health disadvantage and a national leader in improving health outcomes for all Aboriginal people.

CASSE (Creating A Safe Supportive environment) is a psychological not-for-profit organisation with the vision to change minds in order to save lives. CASSE aims to promote safe, supportive environments through psychoanalytic awareness. We focus on empowering people and communities to understand and work through their trauma (manifest by suicide, depression, violence, substance usage) by preserving and strengthening cultural life and capacity between the generations in a self-determining way.

4.WA AHCWA is hosting a Close the Gap Family Festival!

There will be live entertainment, traditional dancers, 100.9fm Noongar Radio, community stalls, food vans, animal farm, face painting, traditional art, seniors tent, photo booth, raffles and heaps more!

Key details: 24th March, 2018 at Birdwood Park, Highgate, from 11am-5pm!

The event is supported by the City of Vincent, Oxfam, Tomorrow’s Dream.

Please share through your networks and make sure you come down

5. ACT : Winnunga ACCHO helping to Close the Gap in the ACT

The Ngunnawal people are the Traditional Owners of the lands that the ACT is located on. However, there are many Aboriginal people from other parts of the country living in and visiting Canberra. This is mainly due to the mobility of people generally, connecting with family, the histories of displacement, and employment opportunities particularly in the Commonwealth public service.

Winnunga was established in 1988 by local Aboriginal people inspired by the national mobilisation of people around the opening of the new Parliament House in May and the visit by the Queen. The late Olive Brown, a particularly inspirational figure who worked tirelessly for the health of Aboriginal people, saw the need to set up a temporary medical service at the Tent Embassy site in Canberra and this proved to be the beginning of Winnunga.

Mrs Brown enlisted the support of Dr Sally Creasey, Carolyn Patterson (registered nurse/midwife), Margaret McCleod and others to assist. Soon after ACT Health offered Mrs Brown a room in the office behind the Griffin Centre to run a clinic twice a week (Tuesday and Thursday mornings) and on Saturday mornings.

Winnunga operated out of this office from 1988 to 1990. The then Winnunga Medical Director, Dr Peter Sharp, began work at Winnunga in 1989. Other staff worked as volunteers. In January 1990 the t ACT Minister for Health at the time, Wayne Berry, provided a small amount of funding. By 1991 the clinic was operating out of the Griffin Centre as a full time medical practice. In that same year the ACT attained self-government.

Read the full story HERE

Download the most recent newsletter

Winnunga AHCS Newsletter 2018

6.1 :  QLD ATSICHS Brisbane team helps to Close the Gap at the women’s fun run

6.2 QLD : Telehealth closes the gap on Indigenous health in Queensland

By having a telehealth-supported dementia service based at a primary health care centre, it means people will not have to travel to access care, and the videoconferencing equipment will be available for other services as well”

Cunnamulla Aboriginal Corporation for Health CEO Kerry Crumblin said areas previously not covered by specialist services would benefit from the program, and patients at high risk could be targeted

ACCHO Website

An integrated telehealth service could help close the gap for Indigenous Australians with dementia living in rural and remote communities.

The University of Queensland’s Centre for Online Health is working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health services on a new telehealth-supported project.

Centre Director Professor Anthony Smith said the service would provide specialist geriatric consultations via videoconference for people with dementia and their carers living in rural and remote areas of Queensland.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as young as 45 are being diagnosed with dementia, and Indigenous people experience the disease at a rate three to five times higher than the general population,” Professor Smith said.

The service, based at Brisbane’s Princess Alexandra Hospital and Cairns Hospital, aims to provide earlier diagnosis and better treatment.

Cherbourg Hospital

Indigenous health workers will receive support from the Dementia, Regional and Remote, Empowering, Aboriginal and Torres Strait, Medicine, Telehealth (DREAMT) project team to provide education, awareness and prevention programs.

The DREAMT project is funded by the Department of Health, Dementia and Aged Care Services Fund

7. Vic : VAHS is holding an event /Health checks for Closing the Gap Day.

CTG  will be held at both Fitzroy and Preston sites.

During the day, there are going to be health information stalls and lunch. For people who haven’t had their health checks, and would like to book in for another time, today is your day!

As apart of having you health check completed, you can either receive a t-shirt or $30 voucher. Hope to see you there. Thank you

More Info

8. SA : Port Power and Deadly Choices support Aboriginal Health checks to Close the Gap

View video here

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