” The health outcomes of Indigenous Australians are of paramount importance to me. I am humbled by the opportunity to be the first Indigenous person to be appointed to the Commonwealth Ministry and to be the Minister responsible for such an important portfolio,”
Article 1 of 3 Below : Ken Wyatt pictured above with the other 3 Aboriginal politicians (right ) and Billy T Tompkins ( left ) doing the traditional welcome
Minister for Aged Care and Minister for Indigenous Health Ken Wyatt
“We are very confident that Mr Wyatt, as an Aboriginal person with a long history working in health before entering politics, will have a better understanding of the issues affecting Aboriginal people’s health and wellbeing.
AHCWA and the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHSs) in WA very much look forward to working with Mr Wyatt to ensure ACCHSs continue to deliver culturally appropriate health services across WA.”
Article 2 below : AHCWA Chairperson Michelle Nelson-Cox
“We are excited to meet with Minister Wyatt to discuss equitable health and life outcomes for Indigenous Australians and the cultural wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
AIDA is passionate about improving the health outcomes for Indigenous Australians and we are confident that our goal of growing the number of Indigenous doctors to reach population parity will significantly assist in closing the health gap for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”
Article 3 Australian Indigenous Doctor’s Association ( AIDA) CEO Mr Craig Dukes
Article 1 full text Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health Appointment
Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care, Ken Wyatt AM, MP has welcomed today’s appointment of Greg Hunt as the new Minister for Health and his own appointment as the Minister for Aged Care and Minister for Indigenous Health.
“It is a great honour and privilege to have been asked by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to serve as Minister for Aged Care and Minister for Indigenous Health,” Mr Wyatt said.
“I am thrilled that the importance of Aged Care has been recognised by the Prime Minister having been elevated to its own Ministry and I am honoured to be serving as the Minister responsible for such an important portfolio.
“Aged Care is a partnership between the consumer, their carers, the providers, the policy makers, the government and the wider community and I look forward to be able to take on this new and crucial role in that partnership.
“Consultation with the sector has been a feature of aged care reform up until now and I will ensure consultation with the sector will continue to be a cornerstone for initiatives in this area.”
In addition to being appointed the Minister for Aged Care, Mr Wyatt will also assume the newly created role of Minister for Indigenous Health.
“The health outcomes of Indigenous Australians are of paramount importance to me. I am humbled by the opportunity to be the first Indigenous person to be appointed to the Commonwealth Ministry and to be the Minister responsible for such an important portfolio,” Mr Wyatt said.
Mr Wyatt paid tribute to the people of his electorate for their support.
“I want to sincerely thank the people of Hasluck for giving me this enormous opportunity, not just as their representative, but to also serve the nation in two crucial portfolios. I am incredibly grateful for their support and humbled by their trust in me as their local representative,” Mr Wyatt said.
“I look forward to working with both Minister Hunt and Assistant Minister Dr David Gillespie.”
Article 2 Full Text The Aboriginal Health Council of WA is hopeful the new Minister for Indigenous Health will make closing the gap a priority.
Ken Wyatt was the first Aboriginal Australian elected to the Lower House and has now made history by being the first Aboriginal person appointed to the Commonwealth ministry.
AHCWA Chairperson Michelle Nelson-Cox said the promotion of Mr Wyatt was a good sign that the government was prepared to take Aboriginal health seriously.
“Successive governments have made very slow progress in closing the gap, and the life expectancy for Aboriginal people is still 10 years lower than the general population,” she said.
“We are very confident that Mr Wyatt, as an Aboriginal person with a long history working in health before entering politics, will have a better understanding of the issues affecting Aboriginal people’s health and wellbeing.
“AHCWA and the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHSs) in WA very much look forward to working with Mr Wyatt to ensure ACCHSs continue to deliver culturally appropriate health services across WA.”
Ms Nelson-Cox said AHCWA would seek a meeting with Mr Wyatt to bring him up to date on the health needs of Aboriginal people in WA.
“We really hope that Mr Wyatt can make sure that the health of Aboriginal people is made a priority for the decision-makers in Canberra,” she said.
“We hope that this will be a new era of collaboration in the health sector and will result in better decisions and better outcomes for the health of Aboriginal people.”
Article 3 Australian Indigenous Doctor’s Association welcomes the appointment of the first Indigenous Minister
The Australian Indigenous Doctors Association (AIDA) is pleased to welcome the appointment of the Hon. Ken Wyatt AM, MP as the Minister for Aged Care and Minister for Indigenous Health.
We would like to recognise the significance of Minister Wyatt’s appointment as the first Indigenous person to be promoted to the ministry and the significance that the Parliament has appointed a Minister for Indigenous Health.
Minister Wyatt said “health outcomes of Indigenous Australians are of paramount importance to me. I am humbled by the opportunity to be the first Indigenous person to be appointed to the Commonwealth Ministry and to be the Minister responsible for such an important portfolio.”
We are excited by Minister Wyatt’s appointment because of his extensive experience as a senior public servant in Indigenous health and we are confident that Minister Wyatt will be able to affect real change in such an important area.”
“Aboriginal medical services have proved the longevity of Aboriginal people, so we need the bigger spread and more Aboriginal medical services probably in the next 5-10 years.
We probably need another 100 to 150 Aboriginal medical services throughout the whole country, in cities and remote communities as well, so we’ll be pressuring Ken to make available more funds for the establishment of Aboriginal Medical Services.”
Sol Bellear AM, Chair of the Aboriginal Medical Service in Redfern
“It’s absolutely critical, we need people who understand our health and wellbeing and some of the important illnesses Aboriginal people get that say their non-Aboriginal counterparts don’t,
We have every confidence in Minister Wyatt, he has the experiences, the necessary qualifications, and the contacts and understanding, particularly with his expertise and knowledge having worked in Indigenous health in his past career.
He also knows a lot of leaders around the country and he knows where to get the correct information if he requires it, and we’re certainly willing, ready and able to help him if he requires it and calls upon us.”
AMSANT’S Executive Officer, John Paterson, explained it’s extremely important the minister for Indigenous Health is Indigenous.
The Aboriginal Medical Service in Redfern and the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance of the Northern Territory are pleased to have Ken Wyatt as the new Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health, but have called for improvement.
Ken Wyatt was appointed yesterday as the Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health after a cabinet reshuffle brought about by the resignation of Susan Ley.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says Mr Wyatt’s previous experience as a bureaucrat within the Indigenous Health area makes him an ideal appointment to role.
Sol Bellear AM, Chair of the Aboriginal Medical Service in Redfern, acknowledged Minister Wyatt’s long commitment to Indigenous health, but also recognised there is always room for improvement.
These comments from the Indigenous medical community have not been lost on the first ever Indigenous Federal Minister, who has already called for a new approach to addressing the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Mr Wyatt says it will take a whole of government approach to create lasting change.
Mr Wyatt told the ABC:
“There’s this construct around Aboriginal health that is based on Aboriginal Community-controlled health services and organisations and specific programs that have been funded by the Commonwealth.
But if we’re truly serious, then what we should be doing is saying, ‘alright, how does the health sector, including all the ACCHOs then tackle this issue collectively to make sure that 800 thousand Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in this country have their health conditions improved?… the levels of, and prevalence rates of certain illnesses, tackled in a way that sees a reduction?”
AMSANT Lending a helping hand
AMSANT has been working on creating programs that tackle mental health issues, with a particular focus on intergenerational trauma.
Mr Paterson said he wants to meet with the minister as soon as possible, to present AMSANT’s research and get government support to start implementing the programs.
“We’ve done enough research, now it’s about implementation and action and that’s where we want to encourage governments,” he said.
“We have two experienced psychologists, one Indigenous psychologist, that have been working and looking at all different models overseas and internationally and we believe there are a couple of models that could be implemented in our Aboriginal communities here in our nation,” he said.
“There’s plenty of data and plenty of information, all we require is a willingness of governments and ministers to put the appropriate resources in that area.”
He added that tackling intergenerational trauma in communities could start to change the face of First Nations health entirely.
“You’ll see an increase in children’s attendance at school, their confidence, their general health and wellbeing, and you’ll see people having the confidence to approach issues that they may have been reserved or hesitant about in the past,” The Executive Officer said.
“This underlying trauma and stress that families have experienced because of whatever reasons you know – government policy back in the day, the stolen generation, the removal of kids, you know some families have never ever had some of those experiences treated,” he continued.
“And you can see it being played out now so we really need to focus and invest in some wrap around programs and the right counsellors and psychologists for those families and individuals that are experiencing this intergenerational trauma and stress.
“There is a way forward here and there is a process that can help tackle the underlying issues that many of us still face.”
Paterson said he also wants to talk to Minister Wyatt about ensuring specialist services are available in the NT, that Aboriginal Australians stop dying years earlier than their non-Aboriginal counterparts, and that preventative programs are implemented to tackle chronic diseases.
” Our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health training strategic plan is to expand our capacity and improve the quality of GP training in Aboriginal health settings.
We aim to develop mutually beneficial relationships by building a culturally diverse health workforce, by raising the awareness about the unique cultural history that Aboriginal people enjoy, particularly in Tasmania.”
Allyson Warrington chief executive of General Practice Training Tasmania
GENERAL Practice Training Tasmania is committed to “Closing the Gap”, through its partnership with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre and the Tasmanian Aboriginal Community.
GPTT aims to improve health outcomes for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Evidence clearly points out Aboriginal people continue to suffer a greater burden of ill health compared to the rest of the population.
Overall, they experience lower levels of access to health services, are more likely to be hospitalised for most diseases and conditions, to experience disability and reduced quality of life, and to die at younger ages than other Australians.
Aboriginal people also suffer a higher burden of emotional distress and mental illness than that experienced by the wider community.
GPs have a key service delivery role in addressing these issues. One of GPTT’s main aims is to train GP registrars to deliver high-quality, innovative, regionally based training programs that meet the primary healthcare needs of all Australians.
Our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health training strategic plan is to expand our capacity and improve the quality of GP training in Aboriginal health settings.
We aim to develop mutually beneficial relationships by building a culturally diverse health workforce, by raising the awareness about the unique cultural history that Aboriginal people enjoy, particularly in Tasmania.
Last year we held a Cultural Camp at trawtha makuminya, or Gowan Brae, near Bronte Park.
For two days, GP registrars from across the state enjoyed catering, cultural walks and activities with 10 Aboriginal community members, who ranged in age and experience from elders to young children.
Community members Jason Smith and Nathan Maynard guided the walks and shared information about the traditional fire burning they have been conducting on the property.
They also shared Aboriginal history and culture, showing GP registrars stone tools and the importance of our heritage.
Our GP registrars were treated to a cultural lunch — barbecued mutton-birds and kangaroo patties, with an abundance of salad and fresh fruit. They were taught some of the basic skills of basket weaving and making kelp water carriers. Participants enjoyed wearing ochre and asking lots of questions about the way the original Tasmanian aboriginals lived and survived.
The feedback from our GP registrars was around the strength of their experience and how much they were privileged to learn about the culture of Tasmania’s first people. We will continue to work with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre to deliver this experience.
In the past, GPTT has also been involved with program initiatives, including:
THE delivery of an outreach service for frail, socially isolated, elderly Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients with chronic diseases.
GP registrars planning and organising their learning, specifically facilitated by the Medical Director from the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre.
WE have also been involved through registrar and GP support across the Tasmanian Aboriginal Health Service network.
Every year, GP registrars have the opportunity to spend a significant part of their training at the Aboriginal Health Services in Hobart, Launceston and Burnie and persuade future GP registrars to choose these services as part of their GP training.
General Practice Training Tasmania has also contributed funds for the refurbishment of medical facilities and the upgrading of existing clinical rooms at the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre, as well as supplying appropriate medical equipment.
General Practice Training Tasmania is committed to both continuing and improving our partnership with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Community.
“The bulk of the health gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians has its origin in childhood and adolescence, but before SEARCH there was little information on the health and wellbeing of urban Aboriginal children and families.
“Working on issues identified by Aboriginal health services as priorities, the SEARCH partners have not only been able to better understand the causes of ill-health and disease among urban Aboriginal children but Aboriginal community controlled health services have been able to use the information to deliver targeted services that are making a real difference to their communities.”
Ms Sandra Bailey, CEO of the AH&MRC ( NACCHO Affiliate )
Australia’s largest and longest-running study of the health and wellbeing of urban Aboriginal children will continue thanks to a five-year $2.8 million funding commitment from the National Health and Medical Research Council.
“SEARCH is effective because it is an active partnership between Aboriginal health services and researchers, where health services like us set the research priorities and work collaboratively to develop interventions to address the problems identified,
“I’ve seen the difference in my community at Tharawal, with kids getting the services they need so they don’t fall behind. As an Aboriginal Medical Service, it has also given us crucial data and information that can be used across our entire community.
We know now that the SEARCH partnership model is one that could be rolled out across the country, to give even more Aboriginal communities the information and decision making powers to address local health and social issues”.
Tharawal Aboriginal Corporation CEO, Mr Darryl Wright, said SEARCH was having a real impact, with the data being used by staff at his AMS to provide better services.
The Study of Environment on Aboriginal Resilience and Child Health (SEARCH) is a long term research partnership involving 1600 urban Aboriginal children and their families in NSW reports NITV
Study partners include Aboriginal community controlled health services, the Sax Institute, the Aboriginal Health & Medical Research Council (AH&MRC) and researchers, who are focused on addressing the knowledge gap around the health of urban Aboriginal kids and families.
The information discovered as a result of the Study is then used to improve programs, services and health outcomes for those involved in the Indigenous healthcare sector.
One of the flagship programs developed as a result of SEARCH is the Hearing EAr health and Language Services (HEALS) program. With Indigenous children experiencing middle ear disease earlier, more often and with more complications than non-Indigenous children, HEALS is designed to address these issues by delivering ear nose and throat (ENT) surgery and speech and language services to kids in need.
If left untreated middle ear disease can lead to hearing loss, speech and language delays, and can hamper the kids’ ability to learn. HEALS has so far delivered more than 7000 speech and language services and ENT procedures to over 800 kids.
At the recent SEARCH annual conference, Aboriginal Medical Service staff and researchers came together to discuss Aboriginal kids’ health issues. A panel discussion heard a number of personal stories from participants about the impact of middle ear disease on their children’s development, and the need to get ear, language and speech problems resolved as quickly as possible to benefit kids’ development and education.
Latoya Terry, a Wiradjuri woman working at the RivMed Aboriginal Medical Service in Wagga Wagga, NSW, has seen the difference the HEALS program has made. “Working at RivMed I’ve seen kids go through the program and improve in their speech therapy and improve in their hearing. At school their grades have improved heaps and they are achieving so much more,” she said.
Tallulah Lett is a Kamilaroi and Bundjalung woman who works at the Tharawal Aboriginal Corporation in Campbelltown in south west Sydney. As well as being the practice manager at Tharawal she is the mother to four children, two of whom are part of the SEARCH study – her daughter Marla Rai and son Zayden.
“[In school] my boy has been branded as the naughty one, but he is actually not the naughty one – he’s the one who needs grommets [in his ears] and help with his speech.”
Tallulah told the conference about the challenges her son has faced as a result of middle ear disease. “[In school] my boy has been branded as the naughty one, but he is actually not the naughty one – he’s the one who needs grommets [in his ears] and help with his speech.”
Tallulah also spoke about the important role the HEALS program has had at Tharawal – not just for the kids involved, but also in helping to build essential relationships with the local hospital.
“Having HEALS active in Tharawal has been key to closing the gap between us and the hospital system… since HEALS has come on board we’ve started to develop a referral pathway. There were 184 children in our community that needed ENT surgery – the hospital was shocked by this, but this need has always been part of the community,” she said.
” I was regularly stripsearched from the age of 11 and on one occasion was left in a cell overnight with no mattress, sheets or clothes. They turned the aircon on full blast, I was freezing all night … I was actually crying asking for a blanket.
I was left handcuffed in the back of a stifling hot van during a 1400 kilometre prison transfer from Alice Springs to Darwin. On the trip, I was denied bathroom stops “
Dylan Voller now aged 19 giving evidence at the NT Royal Commission into Youth Detention about his 8 years in out of detention centres . See full evidence article 2 below
” Aboriginal Peak Organisations Northern Territory ( APO NT ) congratulates the Commonwealth and NT Government on calling the Royal Commission Inquiry into Youth Detention and Child Protection.
APO NT has for many years raised with the government the shocking treatment of youth in detention and the long term effects it has on youth
Today Dylan Voller gave evidence at the Royal Commission hearing and broke his silence about his treatment by authorities in Northern Territory youth detention centres.
Finally youth feel confident to tell their stories to Australia knowing they have strong support behind them.
Today’s evidence is moving, this is Dylan’s personal story which shows how troubled his life was and how fragile he is. We congratulate Dylan for having the courage to tell his story as it is good for the public to understand how difficult life is for many youth who have been in and are currently in youth detention”
What we witnessed today is a story of how the juvenile justice system in the Northern Territory denied young people in its care the opportunity to enjoy even the most basic aspects of a normal life.
APO NT supports the Royal Commission inquiry to uncover where the systems have failed and make recommendations on how to improve laws, policies and practices in the Northern Territory to provide a safer future for our children. ”
John Paterson CEO AMSANT (NACCHO Affiliate ) and Spokesperson for APO NT
The Aboriginal Peak Organisations Northern Territory—APO NT—is an alliance comprising the Central Land Council (CLC), Northern Land Council (NLC), North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency (NAAJA), Central Australian Aboriginal Legal Aid Service (CAALAS) and the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance of the NT (AMSANT).
The alliance was created to provide a more effective response to key issues of joint interest and concern affecting Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory, including providing practical policy solutions to government.
Support Services thru NACCHO Members and Relationship Australia
Discussing experiences of the child protection system or time spent in youth detention can be difficult. This is especially so for people who experienced abuse and are telling their story for the first time.
If you need support you can call 1800 500 853 – a free helpline answered locally
- This is a free service and is available 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday
- Support is available to children, young people, their families and others impacted by the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory
- Experienced and qualified staff can refer you to a range of services including counsellors, therapeutic support, and health professionals.
Please note that calls made from a mobile phone may incur additional costs.
You can also contact the following services directly:
|Danila Dilba Health Service
(08) 8942 5400 (Darwin, Palmerston and Malak)Website
Danila Dilba Health Service
|Relationships Australia NT
(08) 8923 4999 (Darwin and Katherine office with outreach to other areas) (08) 8950 4100 (Alice Springs office with outreach to other areas)Website
Relationships Australia Northern Territory
|The Central Australian Aboriginal Congress
(08) 8959 4750 (Alice Springs and surrounding areas)Website
Central Australian Aboriginal Congress, Alice Springs, NT
There are a number of other services available which can provide support wherever you are in the Northern Territory.
Dylan Voller gives evidence at Royal Commission
DYLAN Voller has broken his silence about his treatment by authorities in Northern Territory youth detention centres in shocking admissions at the Royal Commission.
Mr Voller’s treatment at Darwin’s Don Dale Youth Detention Centre sparked the Northern Territory child detention royal commission after footage of him shackled to a chair in a spit hood and a group of detainees being tear-gassed appeared on ABC’s Four Corners.
Mr Voller, 19, this afternoon told the commission that conditions in detention, which he first entered aged 11, were often miserable. He said detainees were regularly denied access to food, water and toilets as punishment for bad behaviour.
“There was one instance where I was in an isolation placement at Alice Springs detention centre and I was busting to go to the toilet … I had been asking for at least four or five hours,” Mr Voller said.
“They’d just been saying ‘no’.
“I ended up having to defecate into a pillow case because they wouldn’t let me out to go to the toilet.
“Eventually when I got let out the next morning, I was able to chuck that pillow case out.”
The key witness said on other occasions he was forced “to urinate out the door, out the back window, even in just normal rooms because they haven’t been able to come down”.
He said other detainees urinated out “the back window or into water bottles and chucking them out, like drink bottles and chucking them out the next day”.
Mr Voller said when guards allowed him to visit the bathroom they would only give him “five tiny little squares of toilet paper”.
“I’d go to the toilet, they’d only rip off, like, five tiny little squares of toilet paper and say: ‘That’s all you’re getting … make it last’,” Mr Voller said.
“They wouldn’t give us enough toilet paper.
“They done (sic) that quite a bit.”
According to the teen, detainees in Don Dale had to share underwear if they didn’t have enough money to buy their own. He described a prison economy where detainees could earn money through good behaviour and use it to buy items including underwear, deodorant, and CDs.
“The max you could earn was $4.50 a day and they’d take $1.50 off us every day for rent,” Mr Voller said.
“If you don’t buy your own underwear, the only other underwear you have the choice of wearing is the underwear everyone else wears.
“It gets washed, you pick out another pair, it gets washed and it goes through all of the males in Don Dale.”
The court heard Mr Voller was regularly stripsearched from the age of 11 and on one occasion was left in a cell overnight with no mattress, sheets or clothes. “They turned the aircon on full blast, I was freezing all night … I was actually crying asking for a blanket,” he said.
Mr Voller said he was left handcuffed in the back of a stifling hot van during a 1400 kilometre prison transfer from Alice Springs to Darwin. On the trip, he was denied bathroom stops and forced to defecate in his shirt.
“I threatened self-harm … choking myself with seat belts,” Mr Voller said.
He said the guards smoked heavily the whole way which made him vomit.
“I was vomiting, vomiting, I couldn’t get up, I was laying down in the chair and I was trying to break the chair so I could lay down flat,” he said.
Although poised throughout his testimony, Mr Voller’s eyes welled up on the stand, when senior counsel assisting Peter Callaghan SC moved his line of questioning to the topic of family.
“I had one case worker I remember that was saying my family didn’t really care about me and stuff like that,” Mr Voller said through tears.
“For a long time I started believing it, I guess.”
Mr Voller was this morning taken from the Darwin Correctional Centre to the Darwin Supreme Court to speak at the inquiry, which will also hear from Antoinette Carroll, a youth justice advocate who worked with Mr Voller for seven years.
The Royal Commission comes after footage screened in July showed Mr Voller and five other youths being tear-gassed and spit hooded at the Don Dale centre. Vision of Mr Voller strapped to a chair wearing a hood while in the notorious detention centre shocked many when they were screened by ABC’s Four Corners.
The court was closed but Mr Voller’s evidence was streamed online after the NT government lost a bid to delay further witnesses. He will not be cross-examined despite making allegations against 31 guards.
Other youths from Don Dale are expected to also give evidence.
According to his lawyer Peter O’Brien, Mr Voller has been eager to voice his version of events since the inquiry was announced on July 28.
Mr Voller was jailed at Holtze prison, Darwin in 2014 for a violent drug-fuelled binge.
“I’m definitely not proud of it, and it’s just humiliating and a lot of mistakes,” he said.
Both Mr O’Brien and Mr Voller’s mother, Joanne, said Mr Voller was concerned about giving evidence while still in custody and feared repercussions from prison guards.
“I have never seen my son so scared in all of his life,” Ms Voller said after visiting her son on Tuesday.
Mr Voller’s family has repeatedly called for his release from prison so he can speak freely before the commission.
He has also previously requested a transfer to Alice Springs prison.
But his mother said prison guards in Darwin have told him that going to Alice Springs would “increase his chances of getting bashed” because of its lack of CCTV cameras.
Mr Voller today told the court he finished school at age 10 and spent the following seven years in and out of care and youth detention.
He said it was during his first year in care he was first introduced to smoking marijuana and encouraged to commit crimes by older boys.
He described small, institutional rooms with painted-over windows.
“It was disgusting: cockroaches, dust, you felt trapped, you couldn’t really talk to anyone else,” Mr Voller said.
“The only bit of the outside world you got was when you were driving to court or yelling out at the top of your lungs to young people next door at the school.”
— With AAP
“Cultural security means building a system where Aboriginal people feel safe, confident and able to participate fully as both consumers and providers of health care without fear of judgement or discrimination,
“Indigenous people make up almost 30 per cent of the NT’s population and account for the majority of the NT’s public health service consumers.
“The Northern Territory has an important role in setting appropriate standards for cultural security in health, and demonstrating the benefits to be gained through the delivery of culturally secure services.”
The Northern Territory Health Minister Natasha Fyles has launched a new framework, placing culture at the centre of Indigenous health service delivery.
DOWNLOAD POLICY DOCUMENT HERE
The Aboriginal Cultural Security Framework provides a 10 year guide to improving health services through the delivery of culturally safe, responsive and quality health care to Aboriginal Territorians.
Download the Framework Here
The Northern Territory is a place of great cultural diversity. This is one of our greatest social and economic resources and is integral to the image we present to the world. Given this diversity, it is essential that Government services can meet the needs of all Territorians.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are almost one third of our population. They also have the greatest health and welfare needs of any group of Territorians.
It is important that the Department of Health and CommunityServices (DHCS) delivers services in a way that is both effective for Aboriginal people and that protects and respects their cultural rights and values.
Cultural Security is a commitment that the services offered to Aboriginal Territorians by the Department of Health and Community Services will respectfully combine the cultural rights and values of Aboriginal people with the best that health and community service systems have to offer.
Providing culturally secure services requires health and community service providers to:
- Identify those elements of Aboriginal culture that affect the delivery of health and community services in the Northern Territory
- Review service delivery practices to ensure that they do not unnecessarily offend Aboriginal people’s culture and values
- Act to modify service delivery practices where necessary
- Monitor service activity to ensure that our services continue to meet culturally safe standards.
Providing culturally secure services is a way that we can ensure that all Territorians have access to safe and effective services
The Aboriginal Cultural Security Framework
The Framework will apply to all staff and services across NT Health, providing a consistent approach to action in health care design and delivery for Aboriginal Territorians.
“We have to recognise that culture is central to health if we want to enhance service access, equity and effectiveness,” Ms Fyles said.
The framework will be embedded into operational and service delivery plans, with regular reporting and appropriate monitoring.
Throughout this information the term ‘Aboriginal’ should be taken to include Torres Strait Islander people.
Aboriginal Policy is a Branch of the Aboriginal Policy and Stakeholder Division.
It provides policy development, advice and support to the Department’s Divisions, the Executive and Ministers on matters of strategic importance relating to Aboriginal health. Core functions include monitoring the implementation of policy, and representing the Department and the Northern Territory Government at local and national forums on Aboriginal health service matters.
The principal aim of the Branch is the creation and facilitation of strategic policy relating to Aboriginal health and social wellbeing. It has established relationships with other Divisions and agencies, and the community sector and works to strengthen these relationships as a strategic goal, as well as being a major stakeholder through formal agreements such as the Framework Agreement, which is a course of action that has national uniformity.
The Department has made a full commitment to reforming the health and wellbeing service platform in the Northern Territory. The intention is to ensure that services are accessible, balanced, and that the delivery of services is focused on a set of balanced core services. The Department is committed to actions that will ensure improved development and management of health services that are delivered in an efficient and timely manner.
Aboriginal Cultural Security
The core of the move to cultural security is a shift in emphasis from attitude to behaviour, ensuring that the delivery of health and community services is of such a quality that no one person is afforded a less favourable outcome simply because of differing cultural values and beliefs.
Aboriginal people make up approximately 30% of the NT’s population and are a substantial proportion of DoH clients. They are the most disadvantaged group in the country and present with a higher burden of disease. The NT has the lowest life expectancy for Aboriginal men (61.5) and women (69.2) with a larger percentage of young and smaller percentage of older Aboriginal people.
Cultural security recognises that a more respectful and responsive health and family wellbeing system contributes to improved health outcomes and greater efficiency.
Cultural Security is a commitment that the services offered to Aboriginal Territorians by the Department respectfully combines the cultural rights and values of Aboriginal people with the best that health systems have to offer.
Providing culturally secure services requires health and community service providers to:
- Identify those elements of Aboriginal culture that affect the delivery of health services in the NT;
- Review service delivery practices to ensure that they do not unnecessarily offend Aboriginal people’s culture and values;
- Act to modify service delivery practices where necessary; and
- Monitor service activity to ensure that our services continue to meet culturally safe standards.
Providing culturally secure services is a way that we can ensure that all Territorians have access to safe and effective services.
Download:Aboriginal Cultural Security Policy
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioner Cultural Statement.
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioner (ATSIHP) Cultural Statement is an important statement validating and affirming the important role ATSIHP’s play within a multi-disciplinary health care team in improving the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal Territorians.
The roles of clinicians, allied health staff and ATSIHP’s are equally important as a multi-disciplinary health care team. The role and contribution however of the ATSIHP’s are often less acknowledged, understood or valued.
This statement is important therefore as it establishes a collaborative partnership approach and commitment across the Northern Territory health sector in supporting and valuing the contribution of ATSIHP’s within a multi-disciplinary health care team.
The original concept of this statement came from the 2012 Aboriginal Health Worker Summit. This statement is a validation by both the NT Department of Health and the Aboriginal Medical Service Alliance NT (AMSANT) to the contribution of ATSHIP’s play as part of a multi-disciplinary health care team.
The Statement aims to support ATSIHP’s in their field, both as clinicians and as cultural brokers. ATSIHP’s are often the primary contact in Aboriginal communities and it is important that they are supported to gain the confidence and competence as clinicians to take up clinical and managerial roles in primary health care.
This year’s theme: Strengthening Our Future through Self Determination
The NACCHO Members’ Conference and AGM provides a forum for the Aboriginal community controlled health services workforce, bureaucrats, educators, suppliers and consumers to:
- To support sustainable approaches to health care for continued health improvement and self determination
- Present on innovative local economic development solutions to issues that can be applied to address similar issues nationally and across disciplines
- Have input and influence from the ‘grassroots’ into national and state health policy and service delivery
- Demonstrate leadership in workforce and service delivery innovation
- Promote continuing education and professional development activities essential to the Aboriginal community controlled health services in urban, rural and remote Australia
- Promote Aboriginal health research by professionals who practice in these areas and the presentation of research findings
- Develop supportive networks
- Promote good health and well-being through the delivery of health services to and by Indigenous and non-Indigenous people throughout Australia
1.Call to Action to Present the 2016 Members Conference
Closing date – COB Tuesday 8th November 2016
Dear NACCHO Member,
NACCHO is now calling for Expressions of Interest (EOI) from Member Services for Case Studies and Presentations for the 2016 NACCHO Members’ Conference.
This is an opportunity to show case grass roots best practice at the Aboriginal Community Controlled service delivery level. In doing so honouring the theme of this year’s NACCHO Members’ Conference ‘Strengthening Our Future through Self Determination’.
You will receive a 10% discount to the Conference, either full or day registration (does not include voting-member registration) if your EOI is successful.
We are seeking EOIs for the following Conference Sessions
2.NACCHO Partnership Opportunities
Please download the information and application package.
Please direct all correspondence in relationship to partnership opportunities to:
Phone: 02 6246 9301
123 Collins Street,
Which has 548 guest rooms & whilst a number of these rooms have currently been held for NACCHO delegates at a heavily discounted rate, these will be released for general sale to the public at scheduled intervals.
We highly recommend you book your accommodation early, which can be done via the unique online booking link.!
Ticket Registrations Available
Payment will be accepted through Event Brite on the registration form.
Invoices will be issued up to 28-days prior to the start of event. If you choose the “issue invoice” option, please note that invoices MUST be paid within 14-days of issue.
In the event that your invoice is not paid within 14-days, your registration will be cancelled. However, this will be notified to you via e-mail.
If you are registering within 14-days of the event and require an invoice please call the NACCHO secretariat on 02 6246 9301 or
Registrations received on any day of this three day event will incur a late fee of $100 per registration: credit card payment will only be accepted – an invoice will not be issued. Late registrations are also not guaranteed the full conference kit, i.e. Program, bag, t-shirt etc.
|Item||Price (ex GST)||Late registration fee (at event)Standard fee plus $100 (ex GST)|
|Voting Member (2 only per member service)||$ 890.00||$ 990.00|
|Non-Voting Member||$ 1,090.00||$1,190.00|
|Day delegate||$ 450.00||$ 550.00|
Notes on types of registration
NACCHO Voting Member – 2 per Member Service
As a member of NACCHO you are entitled to two Voting Member registrations only. Therefore, only two delegates from your organisation can register as a Voting Member.
NACCHO Non-Voting member
If you have further delegates to register, please use the Non-Voting Member registration section.
Non NACCHO members, register in this section.
Please Note: One registration per delegate only – delegates are not to share one registration. Each person attending the Members’ Conference and/or AGM is required to purchase a Registration for either the full three days or, if not attending for all three days, pay a Registration Fee for each day of attendance at the “Day Delegate” rate.
” The Royal Commission has been established to enable the swift inquiry into the treatment of children detained in detention facilities and child protection in the Northern Territory. The Letters Patent formally appoint the Royal Commissioners and outline the terms of reference for this inquiry.
The Hon Margaret White AO and Mr Mick Gooda were appointed Royal Commissioners on 1 August 2016.
The Royal Commission is independent from government and is responsible for determining its own processes”
Updates to the work of the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory for your information and for distribution to the wider communities.
The Royal Commission will hold three weeks of public hearings, relevant site visits and Community meetings from 11 to 27 October 2016.
The Royal Commission will hold public hearings in Court 11, Supreme Court, Darwin from 11 to 13 October 2016.
These hearings will focus on calling evidence from the authors of previous reports and inquiries into matters which are relevant to the Royal Commission’s terms of reference and some subject matter experts in fields which are relevant to the Royal Commission’s inquiry.
Further information will be published on the Royal Commission website as it becomes available.
From 14 to 27 October 2016 the Royal Commission will conduct a series of community engagement meetings throughout the Northern Territory.
For further information, please contact the Royal Commission:
- by phone on 1800 604 604,
- by writing to PO Box 4215, Kingston ACT 2604, or
- by email: ChildDetentionNT@royalcommission.gov.au.
“In a wealthy country such as Australia, I am appalled by the unacceptable gap in the health of Aboriginal people and non-Aboriginal people. More than one-third (37%) of the diseases or illness experienced by Aboriginal people are preventable.
“We need to act before another generation of young Aboriginal people have to live with avoidable diseases and die far too young.
If we are serious about turning this crisis around we need sustained investment in evidence-based programs for Aboriginal people, by Aboriginal people, through Aboriginal community controlled health services – a model we know works.
Matthew Cooke Chair of NACCHO pictured above with Vice Chair Sandy Davies
New figures show that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experience ill health at more than double that of non-Indigenous Australians.
The peak Aboriginal health organisation, the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) said the report highlights the urgent need for a rethink on actions to address the already known and growing crisis in Aboriginal health.
The report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) released today shows Aboriginal Australians experience a burden of disease at 2.3 times the rate of non-Indigenous Australians.
Download the report aihw-australian-burden-of-disease-study
NACCHO Chair, Matthew Cooke, said it is the first ever in-depth study of the scale of disease in Indigenous communities.
“It’s given us a clearer picture of the real impact for Aboriginal communities of poor health in terms of years of health lives lost, quality of life and wellbeing and what the risks factors really are,” Mr Cooke said.
“It’s shown that we still have a massive challenge to address the overwhelming level of non-fatal burden in mental health in particular – which makes up 43 per cent of non-fatal illness in men and 35 per cent of these conditions in women.
The AIHW report found that injuries, including suicide, heart disease and cancer are the biggest causes of death in Aboriginal people. Levels of diabetes and kidney disease are five and seven times higher in Aboriginal people than non-Aboriginal people.
Mr Cooke said the report must trigger a rethink on how health programs are funded and delivered to Aboriginal people.
“The risk factors causing health problems include tobacco use, alcohol use, high body mass, physical inactivity, high blood pressure, high blood glucose and dietary factors – all of which can be addressed with the right programs on the ground and delivered by the right people.
“All levels of government should urgently act on this evidence; we need to see these findings translated into programs, policies and funding priorities that are proven to work. Too many programs aimed at addressing Aboriginal health are still fragmented, out of touch with local communities, unaffordable or inaccessible.
“If we are serious about turning this crisis around we need sustained investment in evidence-based programs for Aboriginal people, by Aboriginal people, through Aboriginal community controlled health services – a model we know works.”
How you can share positive good news stories about Aboriginal Community Controlled Health ?
We are now looking to all our members, programs and sector stakeholders for advertising, compelling articles, eye-catching images and commentary for inclusion in our next edition.
Maximum 600 words (word file only) with image