NACCHO Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health News: NACCHO Communique marks 10 years

feature tile text 'NACCHO Communique celebrates 10-year anniversary - numeral 10 with words NACCHO Aboriginal Health News Alert & 6,190 followers''

NACCHO Communique marks 10 years

Today, NACCHO celebrates the 10-year anniversary of the first publication of the NACCHO Communique, now known as the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health News. During that time an impressive 3,346 editions of the NACCHO Communique have been published on a daily basis. The purpose of the publication is to share a curated collection of news items and other vital information of relevance along with the good news stories of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health sector. Currently the NACCHO Communique has over 6,000+ subscribers.

You can subscribe to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health News and view past editions of the publication here.

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ACCHO’s integrated model of care

The article Culturally Safe and Integrated Primary Health Care: A Case Study of Yerin Eleanor Duncan Aboriginal Health Services’ Holistic Model recently published in the Journal of the Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet exemplifies some of the main approaches that ACCHOs employ when providing integrated and holistic health care.

The case study concludes that Yerin Eleanor Duncan Aboriginal Health Services provides a culturally safe, trauma and violence informed approach to supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and families impacted by domestic and family violence in the Central Coast of NSW. Yerin’s integrated model of care with soft-entry pathways and strong interagency partnerships contributes to the self-determination in the community, which in turn improves access to services for people experiencing domestic or family violence through a supportive, culturally appropriate and safe environment.

To view the case study in full click here.

$30.5m for Indigenous-led health research

The Australian Government has announced $30.5 million for the National Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Research—also known as the Lowitja Institute. The Lowitja Institute is supporting the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people through quality, high impact research and knowledge translation by prioritising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leadership.

Minister for Health and Aged Care, Greg Hunt, said the work of Lowitja encompasses all areas that contribute to the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including social and cultural determinants. “Improving health and social equity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is one of Australia’s key heath challenges,” Minister Hunt said. “Research is the drive to deliver safe, quality and culturally appropriate health care.”

Minister for Indigenous Australians, Ken Wyatt AM MP, said Indigenous-led research would continue to be an important part of Closing the Gap. “The institute has built extensive networks with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health researchers, peak bodies, health organisations and communities to drive a comprehensive, collaborative health research program,” Minister Wyatt said.

To view Minister Hunt and Minister Wyatt’s joint media release in full click here.

Lowitja Institute foyer

Lowitja Institute foyer. Photo: Peter Casamento. Image source: Greenway Architects website.

Sent home with ‘shut-up-pill’

Denise Booth tends to her sister’s grave every evening before the sun goes down. “We miss her,” Denise says quietly. “Miss her ways. And her smiles and that.” So many graves in Doomadgee cemetery belong to young people like Yvette “Betty” Booth. Just two months before she died, the teenager was diagnosed with rheumatic heart disease (RHD), an illness that has all but disappeared in most of Australia.

When Betty’s sister took her to the emergency department, her family says she was sent home with Panadol. “An 18-year-old girl should not be sent home with Panadol,” Mr Evans says. “They are supposed to be the professionals, check her file for goodness sake.”

NACCHO CEO Pat Turner, says it’s inexcusable for a patient to be repeatedly turned away like Betty was. “If I present to an emergency department and I’ve got serious symptoms, I don’t want to be handed Panadol through the grate. I want a full triage and I want to have all the work done that any other Australian has a right to expect. The racism is absolutely out there, and it has to stop.”

To view the full ABC News story click here.

collage of 2 photos, horses on dusty street road & Aboriginal kids playing with a gocart; line drawing of welcome to Doomadgee pop. 1,200

RHD thrives in communities with poor housing and living conditions. Image source: ABC News website.

Flood impact greater for mob

While the flooding crisis that has engulfed much of Australia’s east coast has forced all people to confront similar challenges such as forced evacuations, loss of property and damage to businesses, Aboriginal people are once again over-represented in the number of people impacted by disaster.

Northern NSW is home to many Aboriginal people living in large townships such as Lismore, Ballina, Casino and Kempsey. It is also home to a vast array of discrete Aboriginal communities such as Cabbage Tree Island, Box Ridge, Gundurimba, Wardell, Maclean (Hill Crest), and more.

A quick glance at the regions that have been officially declared a natural disaster zone in NSW reveals that approximately 36,509 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have been directly impacted by the floods in NSW, or 4.2% of those affected by floods.

To view The Conversation article in full click here.

Cabbage Tree residents prepare to evacuate their home during flooding in 2017 - 3 adults, 2 children with bags, bedding walking down a footpath

Cabbage Tree, NSW residents preparing to evacuate their home during flooding in 2017. Photo: Tracey Nearmy, AAP Image. Image source: The Conversation.

Good Medicine Better Health modules

The Good Medicine Better Health Team at NPS MedicineWise have developed seven education modules for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers with more to come in 2022. The education aims to improve quality use of medicines (QUM) in Aboriginal communities and follows members of a family as they learn more about their medicines.

The modules focus on improving knowledge about medicines in asthma, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, respiratory tract infections, anxiety and depression and chronic pain. Proud Ankamuthi and Erub woman and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker, Judith Parnham, talks about the importance of QUM education in this video. Modules are self-paced and earn CPD points.

For further information about the eLearning modules click here.

tile text 'Good Medicine Better Health' with Aboriginal mother & two children

Image source: NPS Medicinewise website.

Reasons for self-discharge from hospital

Occasions of self-discharge from health services before being seen by a health profession or against medical advice are often used by health systems as an indicator of quality care. People self-discharge because of factors such as dissatisfaction with care, poor communication, long waiting times, and feeling better in addition to external factors such as family and employment responsibilities.

These factors, plus a lack of cultural safety, and interpersonal and institutional racism contribute to the disproportionately higher rates of Indigenous people self-discharging from hospital. A recent study: “I’m outta here!”: a qualitative investigation into why Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people self-discharge from hospital aims to increase understanding about the causative and contextual factors that culminate in people self-discharging and identify opportunities to improve the hospital experience for all.

The study concludes that cumulative impact of unmet needs was at the core of each participant’s account of why they self-discharged. These needs have been grouped into five broad, but interrelated themes: the need to know and the need to be heard; the need for confidence in the quality of care; the need to be treated with dignity and respect; the need for nourishment, sleep and stimulation; and the need for peace of mind.

To view the study in full click here.

hand of hospital patient with temperature monitor on finger

Image source: The Medical Journal of Australia.

Call to ban alcohol ads in sport

New research published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health has found that Australian children are exposed to enormous volumes of alcohol advertising during live sports broadcasts each year.

The study funded by the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) and undertaken by Deakin University analysed the volume of alcohol ads placed by alcohol companies during sport on free-to-air television networks. The study also examined the financial impact to TV networks if alcohol advertising during sport was removed.

The study found that the top 10 alcohol companies placed 10,660 alcohol ads during Australian sports broadcasts over a 12-month period. This amounts to an average of 75 minutes of alcohol advertising each week. Almost half (45%) of the ads aired during children’s viewing times (before 8.30pm). Most of the advertising (89%) aired during the Australian Football League (AFL), National Rugby League (NRL) and cricket.

FARE CEO, Ms Caterina Giorgi, said our children should be able to enjoy sport without being bombarded with alcohol advertising. “Sport is a big part of the lives of many families across Australia. Having sport saturated with alcohol advertising, particularly at times when so many children are watching, is an appalling marketing tactic used by alcohol companies to recruit new drinkers,” Ms Giorgi said.

You can view an article on the cost of an advertising ban to alcohol companies here and FARE’s media release here.

young boy in footy gear with teddy looking a big screen of AFL game; text 'alcohol companies are preying on your kids during sports' & shadow on wall of scary image with claws

Image from FARE’s End Alcohol Advertising in Sport campaign.

New process for job advertising

NACCHO have introduced a new system for the advertising of job adverts via the NACCHO website and you can find the sector job listings here.

Click here to go to the NACCHO website where you can complete a form with job vacancy details – it will then be approved for posting and go live on the NACCHO website.

Kidney Health Week

Kidney Health Week starts TODAY!

The theme this year is ‘Kidney health for all’ and with a focus on improvements we can all make to our everyday. And the best part is that Kidney Health Week is going virtual so everyone can take part!

There will be four lunchtime sessions during the week led by experts in their field, which will cover nutritionmovementstress and sleep. There will also be a movement challenge with a Fit Squirrel prize pack and much much more.

For more information about Kidney Health Week click here.

tile text 'Kidney Health Week - Save the Date 7-13 March 2022' 6y faces looking down into camera; Kidney Health Australia logo

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