NACCHO TOP 10 #JobAlerts : This week in Aboriginal Health : #Doctors #GP #Aboriginal Health Workers / #Nurses / Health #Promotions

1.Nunkuwarrin Yunti Communications and Promotions Officer – Tobacco

2. QLD : ACRRM or FRACGP for Clinical Director Role

3. VAHS Aboriginal Health Promotion Officer

4. Armajun ACCHO  AOD Coordinator and AOD Caseworkers

5.Congress ORGANISATIONAL CAPABILITY MANAGER\ Alice Springs

6. Congress EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST- CLIENT SERVICE ROLES

7. Congress ABORIGINAL HEALTH PRACTITIONER / REGISTERED NURSE

8. Congress General Practitioner

9.SA Aboriginal Health Educator/Liaison Officer

10. NT Medical Practitioner / General Practitioner

 

How to submit a Indigenous Health #jobalert ? 

NACCHO Affiliate , Member , Government Department or stakeholder

If you have a job vacancy in Indigenous Health 

Email to Colin Cowell NACCHO Media

Tuesday by 4.30 pm for publication each Wednesday

1.Nunkuwarrin Yunti Communications and Promotions Officer – Tobacco

Opportunity to make a real difference in Health Improvement with the Aboriginal Community

  • Excellent remuneration of $63,777 – $67,978 plus super and salary packaging!
  • Keep your ideal work/life balance, with family-friendly hours & extra leave entitlements in this unique role!
  • Opportunities to advance your career within the organisation!
  • Applications Close COB 29th May 2017.

About the Organisation

Nunkuwarrin Yunti is the foremost Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation in Adelaide, South Australia, providing a range of health care and community support services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

First incorporated in 1971, Nunkuwarrin Yunti has grown from a welfare agency with three employees to a multi-faceted organisation with over 70 staff who deliver a diverse range of health care and community support services.

 Nunkuwarrin Yunti is an Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service, managed by an all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Board whose members are chosen by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

About the Tackling Indigenous Smoking Program (Click for more Information)

The Tackling Indigenous Smoking Program aims to reduce smoking prevalence rates in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, by providing an innovative population health program that encourages changes in smoking behaviours and attitudes.

The program delivers culturally sensitive preventative health activities including community education, health promotion, and social marketing activities that promote quitting, smoke-free environments and encourage attitudinal and behavioural change.

About the Opportunity

Nunkuwarrin Yunti has an exciting opportunity for a Communications and Promotions Officer (Tobacco) to join their friendly team in South Australia, on a full-time basis.

Reporting to the Team Manager, this position will see you assisting with the development and implementation of a number of culturally appropriate health promotion initiatives aimed at the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, to encourage a movement towards a smoke-free lifestyle.

Some of your key responsibilities will include:

  • Assisting with the development and implementation of localised innovative communication and public engagement strategies, inclusive of digital campaigns, that engage the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community;
  • Assisting with the management, implementation and logistics of key stakeholder community events, displays, and launches;
  • Helping to build the programs’ public image and increase public recognition, through the development and management of social media, print, online, radio, website, and email communications;
  • Planning, writing, editing, and publishing media communication materials across a number of digital and print platforms;
  • Planning and managing budget allocations in collaboration with the Team Manager; and
  • Planning, coordinating, and implementing community events with external stakeholders, such as open days, fun runs, and educational sessions.

The ideal candidate will have substantial vocational skill and experience to perform in the role or hold at least a Certificate IV or higher in media and communications, marketing, social science or other relevant vocational qualifications. You’ll have demonstrated experience in project management, with the confidence to develop and implement public engagement strategies, including digital campaigns that effectively target Indigenous people. The ability to effectively communicate with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in a culturally sensitive manner will be paramount to your success.

Strong computer literacy, with the ability to use all programs within the Microsoft Office Suite and a number of digital media platforms, will ensure you flourish in this role. Highly developed written and verbal communication skills will see you producing effective media materials, as well as identifying and nurturing effective relationships with key media stakeholders.

Whilst it isn’t a requirement of the role, candidates with experience working in population health programs, communications/public relations, and/or supporting large and small promotional events, will be viewed favourably. In addition, experience using the Adobe Creative Suite will be held in high regard.

To view the position description, click here.

For further information or any queries, please contact Andrew Schultz 08 8406 1600.

Applications close by COB 29th May 2017.

Please note: It is a requirement of this role that successful candidates have a current driver’s licence, and are willing to undergo a National Police Check prior to commencing employment with Nunkuwarrin Yunti.

2. ACRRM or FRACGP for Clinical Director Role QLD 

An opportunity has become available for a General Practitioner to accept the role of Clinical Director with an ever-growing Community Controlled Aboriginal Health Service in Queensland.

YOUR NEW JOB DESCRIPTION: This organisation is looking for a GP with ACRRM or FRACGP qualifications with the ability to supervise GP registrars. Previous Clinical Director experience will be highly regarded but not necessary.

Interest in making a long term positive impact on our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community is imperative.

You will deliver comprehensive primary health care services as part of the multidisciplinary team. You will demonstrate quality of care at a high level, strong leadership and continue quality improvements across the service. As the Clinical Director, you will implement development strategies and teaching models.

In return you will offered unmatched job satisfaction and a highly sought after work-life balance. As the Clinical Director, you will be rewarded a highly base salary of $310,000 with benefits including but not limited to rental allowance, relocation cost, CPD allowances, vehicle plus much more!

Further details are available by contacting Shannon Edwards on

0406 178 041 or  Shannon.edwards@ywrec.com

3. VAHS Aboriginal Health Promotion Officer


Employer: Victorian Aboriginal Health Service
Work Type/s: Contract, Full Time
Classification/s: Health Promotion, Indigenous, Project Management
Sector/s: Not For Profit (NFP)
Location: Melbourne

Job posted on: 16 May, 2017.
Applications close: 26 May, 2017.


Short Description

The Health Promotion Project Officer will work as part of the Healthy Lifestyles and Tobacco Team to implement local health promotion activities with a focus on tackling Indigenous Smoking initiatives. The successful applicant will need to be able to think creatively and participate in health promotion activities which require dressing up and participating in performances and videos for community events.

To apply, applicants must have experience in the following:

  • Demonstrated experience in health promotion, experience in smoking cessation and / or Aboriginal Health
  • Demonstrated project management, negotiation, time management and analytical skills
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively develop, deliver, evaluate and report on projects and programs effectively
  • Demonstrated ability to engage with the local Aboriginal Community
  • Demonstrated ability to work with and develop partnerships and relationships with other health professionals and organisations
  • The demonstrated ability to work effectively as part of a multi skilled team
  • Be of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent (provided for by Section 12 of The Victorian Equal Opportunity Act 2010)

Please note: To be a successful candidate you must meet the position requirements as well as undergo a National Victorian Police Check, hold a valid Working with Children Check prior your appointment and complete a Safety Screening Statutory Declaration.

Salary Packaging available.

How to apply for this jobFor a copy of the Position Description and Key Selection Criteria please contact Merindah Brown on (03) 9419 3000 and if you wish to find out more about the position please contact Laura Thompson on (03) 9403 3305.

Closing Date: Friday 26th May, 2017.

Applicants should address the selection criteria and state full details of qualifications and experience including referees to:

Mr Michael Graham, CEO, Victorian Aboriginal Health Service
186 Nicholson Street, Fitzroy 3065

Or employment@vahs.org.au, using the subject line: Aboriginal Health Promotion Officer application via EthicalJobs.
Supporting materials  Aboriginal Health Promotion Project Officer_QCC_2017.docx

– See more at: http://www.ethicaljobs.com.au/Members/VAHS/aboriginal-health-promotion-officer#sthash.RdZyMXgZ.dpuf

4. Armajun ACCHO  AOD Coordinator and AOD Caseworkers

About the Organisation

Armajun Aboriginal Health Service is an Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service (ACCHS) managed by members of the local Aboriginal communities based in Inverell, NSW with outreach services located in Glen Innes, Armidale, Tenterfield, and Tingha.

Armajun Aboriginal Health Service offers culturally appropriate Aboriginal health care services including Drug and Alcohol Support, GP services, and Dental services. The organisation also promotes the healthy lifestyles, well-being, and good health of the community by providing comprehensive and holistic services.

About the Opportunity

Armajun Aboriginal Health Services now has multiple full-time roles available for experienced Drug and Alcohol Caseworkers (identified positions) and a passionate Drug and Alcohol Coordinator to work across their Tenterfield, Inverell, and Glen Innes office hubs.

As a Drug and Alcohol Caseworker, you will be responsible forproviding and supporting access to a range of drug and alcohol services in the community, both on an outreach basis and from the Hub location. You will also advocate on behalf of clients and refer and integrate clients for client centred related services.

To be successful in this role you will hold a Certificate IV drugs and alcohol, welfare, social work, or equivalent. You will also have demonstrated experience working with Aboriginal people and community.

The ideal candidates will have Aboriginality*, effective written and verbal communication skills, and a strong understanding of the needs of those dealing with drug and alcohol issues in the community.

*Aboriginality is a genuine occupational requirement of this position, exemptions claimed under Section 14D of the Anti-Discrimination Act, NSW 1977.

Please note: Candidates are required to hold a current driver’s license and have the ability to travel overnight within the region if required.

Reporting to the Program Manager, as a Drug and Alcohol Coordinator, you will be responsible coordinating and providing a range of evidence-based drug and alcohol treatment and support services, including direct clinical services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, both on an outreach basis and from the Hub location. You will also provide support to a dedicated team of AOD caseworkers to ensure services are being provided and implemented in line with the organisational framework.

To be successful in this role you will hold a tertiary qualification in a health or welfare discipline and be eligible for membership or registration with an appropriate professional body. You will also have demonstrated experience in staff supervision, support, and training. Candidates with previous experience working in rural primary health care in an Aboriginal community will be highly regarded.

This role requires an individual who is a passionate and enthusiastic leader and who displays a strong understanding of service planning within a multidisciplinary health service delivery model.

Please note: Candidates are required to hold a current driver’s license and have the ability to travel overnight within the region if required.

This is not an Aboriginal Identified Position however, Aboriginal people are encouraged to apply.

About the Benefits

In return for your hard work and dedication, as an AOD Coordinator, you will be rewarded with an attractive salary circa $86,500 negotiable with skills and experience plus salary sacrificing options.

As a AOD Caseworker, you will enjoy competitive remuneration circa $38,950 – $54,120 negotiable for the right candidates and salary sacrificing options.

Join this vibrant NFP organisation to make a difference to Aboriginal health in remote communities – Apply Now!

How to Apply

Click here for more information http://kamsc-ovahs.applynow.net.au/jobs/89211

5.Congress ORGANISATIONAL CAPABILITY MANAGER\ Alice Springs

Reference: 3522029

Are you an experienced HR Generalist looking for a new challenge!

An exciting opportunity has arisen for an HR generalist to lead projects that will develop organisational capability, performance, development and engagement of Congress’ growing workforce. You will be an expert advisor at both operational and strategic levels with the ability to design and deliver practical and pragmatic solutions to develop organisational capability.

Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (Congress) has over 43 years’ experience providing comprehensive primary health care for Aboriginal people living in Central Australia.

As well as a wonderful lifestyle and rewarding work, Congress offers:

  • Competitive salaries
  • Six (6) weeks annual leave
  • 9.5% superannuation
  • Generous salary packaging
  • A strong commitment to Professional Development
  • Family friendly conditions
  • Relocation assistance (where applicable)
  • District allowance

For more information on the position please contact General Manager Human Resources, Kim Mannering on 0437 459 638 and email: kim.mannering@caac.org.au.

Applications close: Monday 5 June 2017.

*Total effective package includes: base salary, district allowance, superannuation, leave loading, and estimated tax saving from salary packaging options.

Contact Human Resources on (08) 8959 4774 or vacancy@caac.org.au for more information.

For more information about jobs at Congress visit http://www.caac.org.au/hr.

6. Congress EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST- CLIENT SERVICE ROLES

Alice Springs
Reference: 3511700
  • Client Service Officer
  • Across Multiple Sites​
  • Base Hourly Rate $25.84 – $31.10

Aboriginal Identified

Due to expansion of service locations in Alice Springs Congress is seeking experienced Client Service Officers who will provide a high standard of client service and general administrative support to various Congress Clinical Teams, the roles may involve evening and weekend shiftwork.

Congress offers the following:

  • Competitive salaries and allowances
  • Six (6) weeks’ annual leave
  • Generous salary packaging up to $30,000 per annum
  • A strong commitment to Professional Development
  • Relocation assistance (where applicable)
  • Access to selected Congress health services at no cost for self and eligible family.

Applications will be reviewed as they are received.

Application close: MONDAY 31 JULY 2017.

For more information about jobs at Congress call Human Resources on (08) 8959 4774 or email vacancy@caac.org.au or visit www.caac.org.au/hr.

Applications Close: 31 Jul 2017

7. Congress ABORIGINAL HEALTH PRACTITIONER / REGISTERED NURSE

Alice Springs
Reference: 3510743
  • Base Salary: $60,781 – $95,023 (p.a.)
  • Total Effective Package: $77,473 – $117,342 (p.a.)*
  • Fixed Term Contract

Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (Congress) has over 40 years’ experience providing comprehensive primary health care for Aboriginal people living in Central Australia. Congress is seeking a Aboriginal Health Practitioner / Registered Nurse who is interested in making a genuine contribution to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal people.

The Aboriginal Health Practitioner / Registered Nurse provides comprehensive primary health care. The position works within a multidisciplinary team and is integral to ensuring cultural integrity and high standards of clinical care to clients accessing our Sadadeen Clinic.

Alice Springs offers a unique lifestyle in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere in the heart of Australia. It is within easy reach of Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Watarrka (Kings Canyon) and a host of other world heritage sites.

As well as a wonderful lifestyle and rewarding work, Congress offers the following:

  • Competitive salaries
  • Six (6) weeks’ annual leave
  • 9.5% superannuation
  • Generous salary packaging
  • A strong commitment to Professional Development
  • Family friendly conditions
  • Relocation assistance (where applicable)
  • District allowance

For more information on the position please contact Clinic Manager, Tanya Gardner on (08) 7999 6400

Application close: FRIDAY 26 MAY 2017.

*Total effective package includes: base salary, district allowance, superannuation, leave loading, and estimated tax saving from salary packaging options.

Contact Human Resources on (08) 8959 4774 or vacancy@caac.org.au for more information. Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.

For more information about jobs at Congress visit http://www.caac.org.au/hr.

Applications Close: 26 May 2017

8. Congress General Practitioner

Alice Springs

Reference: 3326264

  • Base salary between $179,818 and $208,556 depending on experience (includes district allowance)
  • Paid annual leave 6 weeks plus 1 week paid professional development leave
  • Flexible working conditions
  • Medicare incentive scheme
  • NFP salary sacrifice up to $30,000 pa
  • General Practice Rural Incentives Program (as at 1 November 2016). Congress operates in MM6 and MM7 regions, providing access to annual gross payments of up to $35K and $60K respectively depending on performance.
  • Working with a large team of general practitioners
  • Access to Congress provided selected medical services at no cost for self and eligible family..

Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (Congress) has over 40 years’ experience providing comprehensive primary health care for Aboriginal people living in Central Australia. Congress is seeking a General Practitioner who is interested in making a genuine contribution to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal people.

This position is based in Alice Springs with a town of 27,000 people, with good access to good schools, flights, amenities.

For more information on the position please contract, Medical Director, Sam Heard 0438 556 050 or sam.heard@caac.org.au.

For more information about jobs at Congress call Human Resources on (08) 8959 4774 or email vacancy@caac.org.au or visit www.caac.org.au/hr.

Applications will be reviewed as they are received.

Applications Close: 30 Jun 2017

9.SA Aboriginal Health Educator/Liaison Officer

GPEx is the South Australian Training Organisation which delivers training to doctors selected to specialise in general practice in Australia.

We are a provider of the Australian General Practice Training program that is administered by the Department of Health and funded by the Australian Government.

GPEx is built on GPExpertise, centered on GPExperience and is a vision of GPExcellence

The role of Aboriginal Health Educator/Liasion Officer involves liaison and engagement with core stakeholders, program partners and other GPEx staff in the implementation of the ATSI Strategic Plan.

Reporting to the Director Medical Education Operations the key responsibilities will be:

  • Assist in the planning, implementation and evaluation of the ATSI Strategic Plan.  This will include:
    • Developing and supporting the role of cultural mentors within identified Aboriginal health training posts
    • Supporting the increase of Aboriginal health training posts by assisting the identified Aboriginal Health Services in becoming accredited training posts
    • In collaboration with the AGPT team, Aboriginal health team and relevant Medical Educators, assist with the integration of Aboriginal health within GPEX’s training program
    • Help facilitate the Aboriginal Health and Culture Workshops for registrars and staff
    • Contributing to internal and external communication of the GPEx Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Strategic Plan
    • Preparing, contributing to and managing relevant correspondence
    • Assist with the development of communication strategy to promote Aboriginal health training posts to registrars.
  • Prepare internal and external reporting, submissions and grant applications as required
  • Develop and maintain successful working relationships with key stakeholdersCandidates will ideally have relevant experience working in a health, education or policy environment.Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are encouraged to apply.The position is full time until December 2018 and will be located in our new offices at 132 Greenhill Road, Unley.Further information and a position description can be obtained via our website at http://www.gpex.com.au or by contacting the People and Culture Support Officer Sarah Magill on 08 8490 0400 or via email sarah.magill@gpex.com.au.Applications to Rebecca Pit Manager People and Culture rebecca.pit@gpex.com.auApplications close Wednesday 7 June 2017.

10. NT Medical Practitioner / General Practitioner

Job No: 89281
Location: Ngukkur, Katherine region, NT
Closing Date: 8 Jul 2017
  • Rewarding opportunity for experienced GP to join a well-established Community Controlled Health Organisation! 
  • Contribute to the improvement of medical services for a number of remote communities!
  • Highly attractive remuneration package circa $330,000 including a number of fantastic benefits!

About the Opportunity

Sunrise Health Service Aboriginal Corporation now has a rewarding opportunity for a Medical Practitioner / General Practitioner to join their dedicated team in Ngukurr, within the Katherine Region of the Northern Territory.

As a Remote Medical Practitioner (RMP) at SHSAC, you will work as part of a multi-disciplinary team, led by the Director of Public Health and Planning. The role will involve provision of primary health care, support for and sharing of skills with other health centre staff and participation in key primary health care initiatives and community consultation.

To be considered for this position you must have the following:

  • Registration as a General Practitioner with AHPRA;
  • An understanding and commitment to the principles of Aboriginal community control in primary health care delivery; and
  • Broad based experience in primary health care appropriate to working in a rural/remote location.

Your dedication will be rewarded with a highly attractive salary package negotiable with skills and experience and salary packaging options.

You will be working in brand new, state of the art facility and also have access to a huge range of other benefits including:

  • 6 weeks leave per year;
  • Up to 10 days study leave;
  • Fully subsidised air-conditioned housing, utilities, subsidised phone rental and up to $100 in phone calls;
  • Salary packaging options up to $15,899 per packaging year;
  • Full support from the health team; and
  • Generous relocation and repatriation.

About the Organisation

Sunrise Health Service Aboriginal Corporation (SHSAC) is a community Controlled Health Organisation providing medical services to a number of remote communities throughout the Katherine region including Barunga, Manyallaluk, Wugularr, Bulman, Mataranka, Jilkminggan, Minyerri, Ngukurr and Urapunga.

Sunrise Health Service Aboriginal Corporation works in partnership with Northern Territory PHN (NT PHN), who provide support services to health professionals and organisation across the Northern Territory. NT PHN offers support and assistance to eligible nurses and allied health professionals who are relocating the to the NT for the purposes of employment.

Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity in which you can truly make a difference – Apply Now!

Aboriginal Health #Referendum debate : At this weeks #Uluru Convention Do #wehavethesolutions ?

” More than 300 delegates will attend the #Uluru Australian First Nations Constitutional Conventioncon against the backdrop of the three big milestones in Indigenous history:

50 years since the #1967referendum

25 years since the High Court’s Mabo decision #Mabo25

and 20 years since the #BTH20 Bringing Them Home report on the forced removal of Aboriginal children.

Finding middle ground:

Twelve delegations from across the country will make their way to Central Australia this week to try to find middle ground on a proposal. Options for change include:

  • Drafting a statement acknowledging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Australians
  • Amending or deleting the “race power” — section 51 — which allows the Federal Government to make special laws for Indigenous people
  • Inserting a constitutional prohibition against racial discrimination into the constitution
  • Establishing an Indigenous body of representatives to be consulted by Parliament
  • Deleting section 25, a redundant clause which says state governments can exclude people from voting in on the basis of their race.

Both leaders will address Parliament on the significance of the anniversaries on Wednesday, take part in the Long Walk to the MCG, and address a lunch before the Indigenous Round game between Essendon and Richmond on May 27, the anniversary of the referendum.

The Uluru Convention promises to be an historic moment in what is a continuing journey for both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the wider Australian community. ”

This Month see NACCHO Save a Dates for more info

23 May : #BTH20 event is about marking the 20th anniversary of the tabling of the Bringing Them Home report.

 May 23-26 Conference Aboriginal People with Disability

26 May :National Sorry day 2017

27 May : Dreamtime at the G /The Long Walk MCG Melbourne

27 May to June 3 National Reconciliation Week

31 May World No Tobacco Day

 ” Aboriginal people will not accept a feel-good, symbolic stamp on a fundamentally unfair system. The system needs to be improved.

We need to change the way we do business in Aboriginal affairs. Constitutional recognition must mean real reform.

It must create a genuine paradigm shift, or Aboriginal people will reject it

Jeremy Clark and Jill Gallagher, the co-convenors of the Melbourne dialogue.

The long road to recognition

Over the past six months, from Hobart to Broome and Adelaide to Thursday Island, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have reclaimed the movement towards constitutional recognition at twelve historic First Nation Regional Dialogues.

On 23–26 May, on the fiftieth anniversary of the 1967 constitutional referendum, representatives from each dialogue will meet at Uluru for the first Australian First Nations Constitutional Convention. There, they aim to agree on whether and how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples might be “recognised” in the Australian Constitution.

Each dialogue has reflected the priorities of the communities involved, but the calls for substantive, structural reform have been consistent.

Some proposals have attracted strong support across the dialogues: structural reforms that provide Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with an enhanced role in Australian democracy such as a representative body with a voice to Parliament and treaty negotiations, and a prohibition on racial discrimination. Also emerging have been calls for a truth and justice commission. Most importantly, the dialogues have agreed that the conversation must not stop at Uluru, and that the First Nation peoples must be involved in negotiating the model of recognition.

The dialogues and the convention are being facilitated by the Referendum Council, a body established with bipartisan support by the Turnbull government. The council’s job is to advise the prime minister and the opposition leader on “progress and next steps towards a successful referendum to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Constitution.” This is a landmark moment: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are being asked whether they want constitutional reform that purports to “recognise” them, and what shape it should take.

As Patrick Dodson wrote when he was co-chair of the Referendum Council, “Strong support by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for the referendum proposal is absolutely essential. If Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples do not support the referendum proposal, there is little incentive to proceed to a referendum.”


These dialogues – designed and led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people themselves – break the pattern of past constitutional deliberations. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples weren’t involved in the conventions that drafted the Australian Constitution in the 1890s. In the document itself, they were excluded not only from the national law-making power of the new federal government, but also from the population count that determined the number of seats for each state in the House of Representatives.

The 1967 referendum removed both of those exclusions. But while that vote brought essential reforms, including a national role for the Commonwealth in Aboriginal affairs, it fell far short of achieving substantive equality. Nor did it recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as First Peoples or guarantee them a meaningful role in decisions about Indigenous affairs. The regional dialogue process puts Indigenous people back at the centre of the debate about constitutional change and practical reform.

The process is important for another reason. The concept of “recognition” is far from straightforward, and the failure to acknowledge this fact has led to concerns about the government-funded RECOGNISE campaign. The message of RECOGNISE, which is part of Reconciliation Australia, is expressed in general terms, emphasising explicit recognition in the Constitution and pointing to the possibility of racial discrimination under existing provisions. But it hasn’t been in a position to articulate the form that recognition might take, and what differences it might make to people’s daily lives. In the absence of a clear model, many people in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities fear that advocating “recognition” will simply build public support for a “minimalist” solution.

A minimalist package would consist of three amendments to the Constitution. The first is the repeal of section 25, which anticipated that states might pass discriminatory laws disqualifying people from voting at state elections on the basis of race, though it penalises any state that does so. Its deletion has multi-party support, as it has had for more than fifty years. It is a “dead letter” in legal and practical terms: no state would now contemplate taking the vote away from Aboriginal people. (In any event, there is a strong argument that to do so would breach the federal Racial Discrimination Act 1975.)

Breaking the pattern: participants in the Ross River Regional Dialogue early last month. Referendum Council

The second minimalist element is a change to the wording of what is known as the “races power” in section 51(xxvi) of the Constitution. This gives federal parliament the power to make laws for the people of any race for which special laws are deemed necessary. When it was introduced in 1901, the power expressly excluded Aboriginal people. The 1967 referendum changed that, for the first time giving federal parliament power to make positive laws for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. A decision by the High Court in 1998 strongly suggested that the power could also authorise laws that are detrimental to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The minimalist change would not address that possibility; rather, it would remove the word “race” from the Constitution and replace it with a power with respect to “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”

The third element is the insertion of a constitutional “statement of acknowledgement.” This would be a statement of facts – for instance, that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples were the original occupiers of the continent, that they have a continuing relationship with their land and waters, and that they possess distinctive cultures, languages and heritage.

In the past, there have been calls for such a statement to be included as a preamble to the Constitution – indeed, prime minister John Howard put forward a controversial preamble proposal containing some words of recognition at a 1999 referendum, which was soundly defeated. Today, it is envisioned that such a statement could sit inside a new chapter of the Constitution, or as a preamble to the section giving the Commonwealth power to make laws with respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Such a statement is unlikely to have any significant legal effect, although it might be used to help interpret the scope of that Commonwealth power regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

A minimalist model stands at one end of a spectrum of what recognition might look like. It was emphatically rejected in the Kirribilli Statement, which was presented by forty Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders to the prime minister and the leader of the opposition on 6 July 2015. That statement read:

[A]ny reform must involve substantive changes to the Australian Constitution. It must lay the foundation for the fair treatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples into the future.

A minimalist approach, that provides preambular recognition, removes section 25 and moderates the races power, does not go far enough and would not be acceptable to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The Kirribilli Statement called on the government to establish a mechanism for negotiations between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and the government and parliament in relation to more extensive constitutional reforms. It also urged the government to engage with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people over an acceptable referendum process. Soon after, Aboriginal leaders went back to the prime minister to stress the necessity of an engagement process initiated and led by Indigenous people. The government eventually relented, paving the way for the current dialogues.


 

Further along the spectrum of recognition sit models that provide First Nations peoples with guarantees of political participation, and recognise self-determination and other inherent rights, prohibit racial discrimination and support agreement-making to deal with past wrongs and future empowerment.

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, to which Australia is a party, contains two key articles to guide states in their relationships with Indigenous peoples. (Indeed, many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were involved in the declaration negotiations.) Article 18 reads:

Indigenous peoples have the right to participate in decision-making in matters which would affect their rights, through representatives chosen by themselves in accordance with their own procedures, as well as to maintain and develop their own indigenous decision-making institutions.

Under Article 19, governments must “consult and cooperate in good faith” with Indigenous peoples “to obtain their free, prior and informed consent” about policies and decisions that might affect them.

The welcome ceremony at the First Nations regional dialogue in Hobart. Referendum Council

Countries across the world have recognised First Nations peoples through new structures that promote political participation and self-determination in different ways. In New Zealand, the Treaty of Waitangi, a foundational document acknowledging Māori authority and ownership, influences modern-day legislation, policy and practice and forms the basis for regional agreement-making or settlements; other structural recognition has been achieved through reserved Māori seats in the NZ parliament. In Norway, Sweden and Finland, the Sámi people were granted political representation through the Sámi parliaments, which facilitate consultation between the government and the Sámi on policies and decisions that affect them.

Recognition can take other forms too. Australia, with no constitutional bill of rights, could insert a constitutional prohibition against racial discrimination. This would extend the protections offered by the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 and be binding on federal parliament. Governments could negotiate agreements or treaties with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, recognising their status as First Peoples, providing reparations for past injustices, settling outstanding land issues, transferring decision-making authority, and facilitating economic development in Indigenous communities. No constitutional reform would be required to enter into and legislate for such treaties, although their status could be enhanced by constitutional reform.

The Referendum Council isn’t starting from scratch in considering these issues. It has been directed to build on work undertaken by two inquiries, one conducted by a panel of experts and the other by federal parliamentarians.

The Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians consulted widely and made five recommendations for constitutional reform in early 2012. While a statement of acknowledgement was among the recommended proposals, the panel stressed the importance of a package that also included substantive legal change: a constitutional prohibition on racial discrimination that would bind all governments across Australia. Its report also considered forms of recognition that would have given greater political participation to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples or would have prioritised treaty negotiations. The federal government has never formally responded to the panel’s report and recommendations.

The parliamentary Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, led by Ken Wyatt MP and Senator Nova Peris, looked at the issue in 2014 and 2015. Its final report contained a number of options, each of which would have restricted the power of the Commonwealth to pass racially discriminatory laws against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The report considered the recommendations in the Expert Panel report, and referred to alternative models that had subsequently emerged. One of these was a proposal for a constitutionally enshrined body to advise parliament on proposed laws that affect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples; others included measures to promote self-governance, structural reform incorporating a Council of Elders, reserved seats in the Senate, and progressing a treaty through constitutional change. Again, there has been no formal response to this report.


It’s important to remember that well-developed plans for recognition pre-dated these two bodies by more than a decade. For example, the 1988 Barunga Statement, presented to prime minister Bob Hawke by Aboriginal people from Central Australia and the Top End of the Northern Territory, demanded the recognition of Aboriginal rights, including the right to self-determination and self-management, to land and compensation and to basic rights enshrined in international law. The statement called on the Commonwealth to pass laws to create a nationally elected Aboriginal and Islander organisation to oversee Aboriginal and Islander affairs, a national system of land rights, and reforms to the policy and justice system.

The Barunga Statement also called on parliament “to negotiate with us a Treaty recognising our prior ownership, continued occupation and sovereignty and affirming our human rights and freedom.” Advocacy for greater empowerment in the 1980s led to the creation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission, or ATSIC, in 1990, but the Hawke government backed down on its promises of national land rights and a treaty.

Following the High Court’s watershed 1992 decision in the Mabo case, prime minister Paul Keating delivered the Native Title Act 1993 and a national land fund, and promised a social justice package. In 1995, in response to that third limb of the response to Mabo, an ATSIC report, Recognition, Rights and Reform: A Report to Government on Native Title Social Justice Measures, reported “overwhelming support for the reform of the Constitution especially in relation to recognition of indigenous peoples.” It recommended that government fund a constitutional reform process canvassing the opinion of Indigenous communities, and facilitate local conventions and negotiations at which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were adequately represented. ATSIC also urged the Commonwealth to investigate reserved seats in parliament. The Keating government didn’t proceed with many of these ideas before it lost government soon after, in 1996, and the proposals were dropped by the incoming Howard government.

Fresh calls for constitutional reform came when the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation issued its final report, Reconciliation: Australia’s Challenge, in 2000. As part of its roadmap to reconciliation, the council recommended that parliament prepare legislation for a referendum to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of Australia, including the introduction of a constitutional clause prohibiting adverse racial discrimination. The council also called for governments across Australia, including the Commonwealth, to advance reconciliation through an agreement or treaty process. Almost two years later, the Howard government rejected the treaty process and the push to include a non-discrimination clause in the Constitution.

The 2007 federal election provided new impetus for constitutional recognition. On the eve of that election, John Howard announced that, if he were re-elected, he would move within eighteen months “to formally recognise Indigenous Australians in our Constitution, their history as the first inhabitants of our country, their unique heritage of culture and languages, and their special (though not separate) place within a reconciled, indivisible nation.” His proposal was for a minimalist model of acknowledgement contained in a preamble, though he also used more ambitious language when he described this as the cornerstone of a “new settlement.”

After Labor’s election victory in 2007, prime minister Kevin Rudd made a formal apology on behalf of the government and the parliament to the Stolen Generations and for other past wrongs. But it was not until Julia Gillard’s election victory in 2010 that the Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians was established to advance the cause of constitutional change.


Today’s calls for constitutional reform to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are made in a changed political and legal environment. The Howard government abolished ATSIC in 2005, leaving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with no national representative body. As Indigenous writer Natalie Cromb has observed, “ATSIC was not without its problems, but to see the governmental power in stripping all representative and legislative rights and powers from Indigenous people in one fell swoop demonstrated just how Indigenous people are at the mercy of the government.”

Today, the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples strives to be a voice for First Nations Peoples in Australia, but its work has been hampered by lack of adequate funding. The prime minister’s Indigenous Advisory Council operates as an advisory panel rather than as a representative body. Across Australia, state constitutions have been amended to include statements of acknowledgement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of Australia. Many of these contain a “no legal effect” clause – a “give with one hand and take away with the other” approach that, for many, undermines even the symbolic significance of the language. The Commonwealth parliament has passed legislation acknowledging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first occupiers of Australia, and their continuing relationship to their land and waters, and their continuing cultures, languages and heritage.

There are also signs of more ambitious plans. In Victoria, the state government has been working with Aboriginal communities since 2016 on how a treaty might be negotiated. The South Australian government has appointed an independent treaty commissioner to draft a framework for treaty negotiations. The Northern Territory has established a cabinet sub-committee to promote public discussion of a treaty.

Meanwhile, the dramatic loss of funding and jobs in Indigenous organisations following the federal government’s Indigenous Advancement Strategy, community distress at alarmingly high rates of youth suicide and incarceration, the threatened closure of remote communities and other intensely experienced local issues add to the complex contemporary political environment in which the regional dialogues have taken place.


The First Nation Dialogues took their present shape after a series of meetings with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders across the country. A leadership forum followed, and the dialogue methodology and agenda were finalised at a trial dialogue.

In each location, the Referendum Council partnered with a land council or another local host organisation. The host organisation and convenors selected around one hundred participants according to a formula of 60 per cent representation of the land owner base (traditional owner groups, native title bodies and so on), 20 per cent representation for local community organisations, and 20 per cent representation for key individuals. Gender and demographic balance, and representation for the Stolen Generations was also a focus.

Each of the dialogues took place over three days. They were facilitated by two local convenors assisted by five local working group leaders, who led and reported back from breakout groups throughout the dialogue. The carefully planned agenda included opportunities for the Referendum Council to provide delegates with information about the history of constitutional reform in Australia, as well as the different forms that constitutional reform might take. Civics education and foundational legal and political information were provided to assist in the discussion of options for reform, during which delegates had an opportunity to tell the Referendum Council what substantive and meaningful recognition would mean to them and their communities.

Small group discussions provided delegates with an opportunity to understand the different reform options, to consider their possible benefits and disadvantages, and to look at alternative proposals. The delegates were asked what their preferred form of recognition would look like. At the end of each dialogue, the delegates confirmed a statement of record of their discussion, and selected ten people to represent the dialogue at Uluru.

The proposals that attracted strong support – treaty negotiations, an enhanced role and voice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia’s democratic system, a prohibition on racial discrimination, a truth and justice commission – all build on decades of consultations and inquiries. They embody the political advocacy of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander campaigners stretching back into the nineteenth century. They reflect Australia’s international obligations, and they mirror structural reforms that have been achieved in other countries.

The Uluru Convention promises to be an historic moment in what is a continuing journey for both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the wider Australian community. •

NACCHO Aboriginal Workplace Health : New Guidelines Safety and Security for Remote and Isolated Health

” The drive to improve the safety and security of the remote health workforce became an industry wide priority following the tragic murder of remote area nurse Gayle Woodford in 2016.

This caused the remote health industry to critically reflect on long held practices health industry to critically reflect on long held practices and challenge its acceptance of the risks that were routinely considered “just part of the job

The goal of theses guidelines is to provide broad statements with examples of activities, which can be implemented by employers, service providers, communities, clinicians, and other stakeholders to establish and maintain safe and effective operating systems in remote health services.”

WORKPLACE VIOLENCE IN REMOTE HEALTH IS AN ONGOING AND ESCALATING CONCERN THAT PRESENTS UNIQUE CHALLENGES NOT FACED IN URBAN AREAS.

Download a PDF copy of Guidelines HERE :

2017-SS-Guidelines-for-Remote-Isolated-Health

In the 2016 – 2017 financial year, CRANA plus received funding by the Commonwealth Department of Health to undertake a remote health workforce safety and security project.

A diverse representative expert advisory group informed the entire project. The members of this group included a representative from NACCHO (Rob Starling ) see Page 4 for the full list

The completion of phase one of the project saw the release of the National remote Health workforce Safety and Security Report : Literature Review, Consultation, and Survey results in January 2017.

The report included a literature review building on the work of the Working safe in Rural and Remote Australia Project. Additionally, utilising workshops, surveys and social media, CRANAplus undertook a “national conversation” with remote health stakeholders.

This provided an opportunity to seek the views of the workforce, employers, and other stakeholders, and test existing assumptions on the real and perceived issues around safety and security.

The report identified several significant issues :

  • The need for employers and staff to conduct hazard identification and risk assessment, event reporting, and workplace review of significant events and near-misses ;
  • The need for staff to be accompanied on-call, and at other times when risks are identified ;
  • The need for more comprehensive and timely orientation of new staff;
  • The need to promote individual resilience and manage the risk of fatigue;
  • The need to address high workforce turnover and issues relating to bullying and harassment;
  • The need for reliable, accessible transport and emergency after hours communication systems, including monitoring, supported by staff training in equipment use;
  • The need to provide access to patient information and data in staff accommodation;
  • The need for staff training and practice in communication and de-escalation techniques, to mitigate the risk of conflict leading to violence.

The full report can be accessed on the CRANAplus website www.crana.org.au

Recognising that the safety of staff and services are essential for the effective provision of health services, the guidelines contribute to supporting two significant government initiatives:

The Commonwealth Work Health and Safety Act ; and the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards (Standard One; Governance for Safety and Quality in Health Service Organisations).

The goal of theses guidelines is to provide broad statements with examples of activities, which can be implemented by employers, service providers, communities, clinicians, and other stakeholders to establish and maintain safe and effective operating systems in remote health services.

The guidelines identify seven safety and security priority areas, each of which is to be considered through the lense of the individual, the team, the employer, the infrastructure, the environment and the culture and community.

These guidelines provide a structured pathway to identify risk and prioritise areas for improvement. Ultimately, it will be highly valuable to develop agreed national standards for remote health workforce safety and security. Standards will provide clear, measurable expectations on safety and security issues, providing greater impetus to drive reform.

Although developed primarily for small remote towns and communities, these guidelines can be contextualised to any area or industry that requires health service provision in an isolated setting.

HOW TO USE THE GUIDELINES

  1. The infographic provides a summary overview of the guidelines and lenses.
  2. The summary table assists to identify the complexity of issues, roles and responsibilities contributing to remote health workforce safety and security.
  3. More detailed information, is provided under the heading of Guidelines, Aims and Activities. This information is provided as a guide only. Activities should be developed according to the context of individual services and communities, and with the contribution of local stakeholders.
  4. The final component of this document provides activities on how different remote health stakeholders can contribute to safety and security issues.

Download a PDF copy of Guidelines HERE :

2017-SS-Guidelines-for-Remote-Isolated-Health

NACCHO Aboriginal Health and #childhood #obesity : How #junkfood brands befriend kids on #socialmedia

ABS Overweight and obesity

  • In 2014-15, 63.4% of Australian adults were overweight or obese (11.2 million people). This is similar to the prevalence of overweight and obesity in 2011-12 (62.8%) and an increase since 1995 (56.3%).
  • Around one in four (27.4%) children aged 5-17 years were overweight or obese, similar to 2011-12 (25.7%).

ABS National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15  

Download this graphic as a poster HERE

LL_ATSI_junkfoodandhealth_infographic

”  We examined how six “high-fat-sugar-salt” food brands approached consumers at an interactive, direct and social level online in 2012 to 2013 (although the practice continues).

If a stranger offered a child free lollies in return for their picture, the parent would justifiably be angry. When this occurs on Facebook, they may not even realise it’s happening.

We found food brands being presented online and interactively in four main ways: as “the prize”, “the entertainer”, the “social enabler” and as “a person”.

Using Facebook, advergames and other online platforms, food marketers can create deeper relationships with kids than ever before. Going far beyond a televised advertisement, they are able to create an entire “brand ecosystem” around the child online.

The latest National Health Survey found that around one in four Australian kids aged 5-17 were overweight or obese.

Food marketers promoting unhealthy options to kids online should be held to account.”

From the Conversation Four ways junk food brands befriend kids online

” Australian households spend the majority (58 per cent) of their food budget on discretionary or ‘junk’ foods and drinks, including take-aways (14 per cent) and sugar-sweetened beverages (4 per cent), according to new research.

Ill health due to poor diet is not shared equally, with some population groups, such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and people who are disadvantaged socioeconomically, more at risk.”

Professor Lee, an Accredited Practising Dietician see article 2 Aussies spending most of food budget on junk food

Picture above from WHO Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health, 2016-2030

Read NACCHO 20 Articles on Obesity

Read NACCHO 20 Articles on Nutrition Healthy Foods

Article 1 Four ways junk food brands befriend kids online

If a stranger offered a child free lollies in return for their picture, the parent would justifiably be angry. When this occurs on Facebook, they may not even realise it’s happening.

There was outrage after a recent report in The Australian suggesting that the social media company can identify when young people feel emotions like “anxious”, “nervous” or “stupid”. Although Facebook has denied offering tools to target users based on their feelings, the fact is that a variety of brands have been advertising to young people online for many years.

We’re all familiar with traditional print and television advertising, but persuasion is harder for children and parents to detect online. From using cartoon characters to embody the brand, to games that combine advertising with interactive content (“advergames”), kids are exposed to a pervasive ecosystem of marketing on social media.

The blurring of the line between advertising, entertainment and socialising has never been greater, or more difficult to fight.

Kids are vulnerable to junk food advertising

Junk food advertising aimed at both adults and children is nothing new, but research shows that young people are particularly vulnerable.

Their minds are more susceptible to persuasion, given that the part of their brain that controls impulsivity and decision-making is not always fully developed until early adulthood. As a result, children are likely to respond impulsively to interactive and attractive content.

While the issue of advertising junk food to children through television and other broadcast media gets a lot of attention, less is understood about how children are consuming such marketing online.

How brands interact online

We examined how six “high-fat-sugar-salt” food brands approached consumers at an interactive, direct and social level online in 2012 to 2013 (although the practice continues).

Analysing content on official Facebook pages, website advergames and free branded apps, we coded brand placements as primary, secondary, direct or implied brand mentions.

While the content may not be explicitly targeted at children, the colours, skill level of the games and the prizes are attractive to younger people. The responses on Facebook in particular show that young consumers often interact with these posts, sharing comments and reposting.

We found food brands being presented online and interactively in four main ways: as “the prize”, “the entertainer”, the “social enabler” and as “a person”.

1. The prize

The fast food company Hungry Jack’s Shake and Win app has been offered since 2012. By “shaking” the app, it tells you, using your smartphone GPS, which Hungry Jack’s outlet is closest and where you can redeem your “free” offer or discount.

In this way, it combines several interactive elements to push the user towards immediate consumption with the brand coded as a reward.

Hungry Jack’s Shake and Win app screens captured on May 17th 2017. iTunes/Hungry Jacks

2. The entertainer

Free branded video game apps or advergames are also used to engage young consumers, disguising advertising as entertainment.

In the 2012 Chupa Chups game Lol-a-Coaster (which is not currently available on the Australian iTunes store), for example, we found a lollipop appeared as part of game play up to 200 times in one minute. The game is simple to play, full of fun primary colours and sounds, and the player is socialised to associate the brand with positive emotion.

Chuck’s Lol-A-Coaster: an interactive game for Chupa Chups.

3. The social enabler

Brands often leverage Facebook’s “tagging” capability to spread their message, adding a social element.

When a company suggests that you tag your family and friends on Facebook with their favourite product flavour, for example, the young consumer is not only using the brand to connect with others, but letting the brand connect to their own Facebook network. For a brand like Pringles, this increases their reach on social media.

A post on the Pringles’ Facebook page on October 13th, 2016. Facebook/Pringles

4. The person

Some brands also use a humanised character, like Chupa Chups’s Chuck, to voice the brand and post messages to consumers on Facebook.

Often this character interacts with the consumer in a very human way, asking them about their everyday lives, aspirations and fears. This creates the possibility of a long-term brand relationship and brand loyalty.

A Chupa Chups post on September 2nd, 2014 showing the character, Chuck. Facebook/Chupa Chups

Brands need to clean up their act

Using Facebook, advergames and other online platforms, food marketers can create deeper relationships with kids than ever before. Going far beyond a televised advertisement, they are able to create an entire “brand ecosystem” around the child online.

The latest National Health Survey found that around one in four Australian kids aged 5-17 were overweight or obese. Food marketers promoting unhealthy options to kids online should be held to account.

In Australia, the food marketing industry is mostly self-regulating. Brands are meant to abide by a code of practice which, if breached, holds them account through a complaints-based system.

While some companies have also pledged, via an Australian Food and Grocery Council code, not to target child audiences using interactive games unless offering a healthy choice, the current system is too slow and weak to be a real deterrent. That needs to change.

While online food marketing may be cheap for the corporations, the price that society pays when it comes to issues such as childhood obesity is immeasurable.

Article 2 Aussies spending most of food budget on junk food

According to Professor Amanda Lee, who is presenting her research at the Dietitians Association of Australia’s National Conference in Hobart this week, healthy diets are more affordable than current (unhealthy) diets – costing households 15 per cent less.

But according to Australian Health Survey data, few Australians consume diets consistent with national recommendations.

“Less than four per cent of Australians eat adequate quantities of healthy foods, yet more than 35 per cent of energy (kilojoule) intake comes from discretionary foods and drinks, which provide little nutrition – and this is hurting our health and our hip pocket,” said Professor Lee, from the Sax Institute.

She said the figures are particularly worrying because poor diet is the leading preventable cause of ill health in Australia and globally, contributing to almost 18 per cent of deaths in Australia, while obesity costs the nation $58 billion a year.

Her research found that, although healthy diets cost less than current (unhealthy) diets, people in low income households need to spend around a third (31 per cent) of their disposable income to eat a healthy diet, so food security is a real problem in these households.

She added that policies that increase the price differential between healthy and unhealthy diets could further compromise food security in vulnerable groups.

“At the moment, basic healthy foods like fresh vegetables and fruit are except from the GST, but there’s been talk of extending this to all foods. If this were to happen, the cost of a healthy diet would become unaffordable for low-income families,” said Lee.

Lee said Australia needs a coordinated approach to nutrition policy – a call echoed by the Dietitians Association of Australian, the Public Health Association of Australia, the Heart Foundation and Nutrition Australia.

NACCHO Aboriginal Health #IHMayDay17 : Our #ACCHO Members Good News Stories from #WA #VIC #NSW #QLD #NT #TAS @KenWyattMP

1.1 NSW Katungul Aboriginal Corporation and Medical Service commemorated Bringing Them Home report 20 years

1.2 NSW : Orange Aboriginal Medical Service (OAMS) Holistic Wellbeing Centre planned

2. ACT Aspiring marathon runner Cara Smith has a healthy future

3. QLD : Apunipima Stands Up Against Domestic and Family Violence in Kowanyama and Pormpuraaw

4.SA Tackling Tobacco Team – Nunkuwarrin Yunti

5. WA Aboriginal Health Council of Western Australia – AHCWA

6. Tas : The Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre (TAC)

7.VIC VAHS Healthy Lifestyle Team celebrates NRL Indigenous Round

 8. NT Miwajtj Health : Unfolding public health emergency in north-east Arnhem Land

 

How to submit a NACCHO Affiliate  or Members Good News Story ? 

 Email to Colin Cowell NACCHO Media     Mobile 0401 331 251

Wednesday by 4.30 pm for publication each Thursday

1.1 NSW Katungul Aboriginal Corporation and Medical Service commemorated Bringing Them Home report 20 years

Two decades have passed since the Bringing Them Home report, but the healing continues for the Eurobodalla’s Indigenous community.

From the local News

Katungul Aboriginal Corporation and Medical Service commemorated the anniversary on Monday with a formal gathering and smoking ceremony at their Batemans Bay centre.

Guest speakers Shanna Provost and Muriel Slockee shared their experiences as part of the hidden and stolen generations.

Ms Provost said sharing personal stories was vital to healing the trans-generational scars.

“These events are really important for community members to get together to provide support to each other,” she said.

Many still felt the effects of the damage done to the stolen generations.

“It is a sad story and this is a safe place for all people to sit in the sadness of that story,” she said.

It’s a long journey, it’s a long road to travel. As a nation, we are only starting on that journey. – Shanna Provost

The report was tabled in the Australian Parliament in 1997 and documented the effect of the stolen generations on Indigenous communities. The report handed down more than 50 recommendations in response to the findings, but many are yet to be implemented.

“It’s a long journey, it’s a long road to travel. As a nation, we are only starting on that journey,” Ms Provost said.

She hoped the next 20 years would see young Indigenous people continue to rise to more prominent roles in the community.

Mrs Slockee, a child of the stolen generations, said it was painful to witness the lasting effect of forcible removal.

“Bringing Them Home still is really sore,” Mrs Slockee said.

“Children are still being stolen, it still hurts, it’s just happening in a different way.

“I hope that when we have our jubilee, we can celebrate by stopping all this rubbish and being open and honest as a nation to our first people.

“We need a fair go.”

Katungul’s commemorations will conclude on Friday, May 19, with a day of coil weaving, oyster shucking, ochre face painting, possum cloak photos and a communal canvas painting. Activities start 10am.

1.2 NSW : Orange Aboriginal Medical Service (OAMS) Holistic Wellbeing Centre planned

THE Orange Aboriginal Medical Service (OAMS) is charging ahead to expand its offerings, all it needs now is a little more funding.

From Local

OAMS has received development approval from Orange City Council for an $780,000 wellbeing centre at Cameron Place.

It will be located next to its existing $4 million premises at Perc Griffith Way, which was completed in 2014.

Chief executive officer Jamie Newman said the centre would incorporate nutritional and exercise services for those recovering from an operation or illness, mothers before and after pregnancy and those with mental illnesses.

He said the idea had come from clients’ requests

2. ACT Aspiring marathon runner Cara Smith has a healthy future

“Indigenous people face health and education issues. Young females, young mothers with two, three, seven children. It’s so easy to fall into a trap but there’s no excuse not to exercise, not to walk or run,”

Cara Smith is one of only six women selected for the Indigenous Marathon foundation program and will compete in the New York City Marathon at the end of the year. Photo: Rohan Thomson from Canberra Times

Aspiring marathon runner Cara Smith braves the Canberra cold to train at 3am so she can spend more time with son Zac, but her desire to change a family history of diabetes and obesity is her No. 1 motivation.

The 29-year-old is one of 12 athletes as part of the latest intake for the Robert de Castella inspired Indigenous marathon project.

They will train for six months before targeting a goal of completing the New York marathon on November 5.

The Queanbeyan mother of one wants to be the trigger for family change for one-year-old Zac to ensure he lives a healthy life.

“I have a family history of diabetes and obesity and I don’t want that for my son. I want to be healthy and I want to be active and I want it to be a part of his [Zac Jnr] daily life,” Smith said.

Former marathon world champion de Castella started the project in 2011 as a vehicle to promote healthy lifestyles for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Smith will balance full-time work with family duties as she begins a tough training schedule to be ready for the 42-kilometre run.

She has never run a marathon, having only completed a half marathon in New Zealand 13 months ago, and will again test herself in another half marathon on the Gold Coast in July.

She is running up to 30 kilometres a week in preparation for not only the Gold Coast but to run her first full length marathon.

“It was scary and exciting to be honest, when [coach] Adrian Dodson-Shaw gave me the call I couldn’t believe it,” Smith said.

“My husband Zac [Snr] is so supportive so that helps a lot and I try not to think about my son [Zac Jnr], otherwise I get caught up and just want to spend time with him.”

Although in the early stages of the program, Smith is already feeling the intensity. She trains four times per week and draws motivation from her family as the work load looks to increase.

“My baby [Zac], he’s my driving force and motivation, he’s a reminder of what I can achieve. ” Smith said.

Running her first marathon, Smith also looks to inspire all indigenous females to get active and improve their health.

“Indigenous people face health and education issues. Young females, young mothers with two, three, seven children. It’s so easy to fall into a trap but there’s no excuse not to exercise, not to walk or run,” Smith said.

Smith will be one of 50,000 to compete in the New York marathon when she completes her journey with the Indigenous Marathon Foundation and knows exactly what will be going through her mind.

“Butterflies, don’t fall, don’t stop, my son, my husband, mom, dad , brother, sister. It’s exciting but I’ve worked hard to get here, I want to show everyone from Northern NSW [New South Wales] what we can do,”

3. QLD : Apunipima Stands Up Against Domestic and Family Violence in Kowanyama and Pormpuraaw

May is Domestic Violence Prevention Month. Domestic violence prevention is always a part of Apunipima’s wellbeing conversation, and for the month of May Apunipima is advocating and supporting capacity in Community to have the conversation around domestic violence and prevention.

Picture above from White Ribbon Day

Domestic and family violence can be both in the form of physical and emotional abuse. The messages are:

  • Learn to identify domestic violence and when it could be taking place
  • Create a supportive environment, know who you can go to and where safe places are in your community
  • Be prepared to leave, have a bag packed, know how to exit and if children need to exit too
  • Both men and women can be a victim of domestic and family violence

A number of events in community will be marking the importance of preventing domestic and family violence.

Kowanyama

Apunipima is partnering with the Women’s Shelter and community in Kowanyama to facilitate yarning circles, candlelight vigil, and a march to raise awareness about Domestic Violence Prevention. Men and women from the Men’s Group, Women’s Group, school, Apunipima, and other organisations in the community will be participating in the March. A Reflections session will be held to make time to think about those who have been lost to domestic violence in Community.

  • May 16th & May 25th Women’s Shelter Yarning Circle
  • May 29th Women’s Group and Candlelight Vigil and Reflections Session
  • May 30th Domestic Violence Prevention March

 

Pormpuraaw

Apunipima is partnering up with the school and Women’s Shelter to deliver Domestic Violence Prevention education through the Pormpuraaw Healthy Kids programme.

  • May 23rd Healthy Kids Domestic Violence Education Session

Help is available. If you are a victim of domestic violence, help is available. You can:

  • Go to a Women’s Shelter
  • Call the 24/7 confidential helpline – 1800 RESPECT
  • Call 000 (or 112 from a mobile) in an emergency
  • DVConnect Womensline – phone 1800 811 811 (24 hours, 7 days)
  • DVConnect Mensline – phone 1800 600 636 (9am to 12 midnight, 7 days)
  • Kids Helpline – phone 1800 551 800 (24 hours, 7 days)
  • Elder Abuse Helpline – Queensland phone 1300 651 192, rest of Australia phone (07) 3867 2525 (9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday)
  • State-wide Sexual Assault Helpline – phone 1800 010 120 (7.30am to 11.30pm, 7 days)

4.SA Tackling Tobacco Team – Nunkuwarrin Yunti

Time to Join The Movement. Get ready for World No Tobacco Day on the 31st May and make a pledge http://tacklingtobacco.nunku.org.au/join-the-movement/

5. WA Aboriginal Health Council of Western Australia – AHCWA

The Youth Affairs Council of Western Australia are conducting a final survey on the Aboriginal Youth Services Investment Reform process in WA.

It is important for the sector to provide feedback on our understanding of the Reforms, so that future processes can be improved. If you are or your organisation has been involved, please follow the link – it will take 20 to 25 minutes to fill out.

Please share! 🙂

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/SX85KWV

6. Tas : The Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre (TAC)

Three Tasmanian Aboriginal children have starred in a new animated television series, broadcast in one of the state’s Indigenous languages.

The new animated television series Little J and Big Cuz is set in “nana’s backyard” and looks at everyday situations for Aboriginal children.

The 13-episode series has been recorded in both English and several of Australia’s Indigenous languages, including Tasmania’s palawa kani which is made up of nine dialects.

It was spoken across Tasmania until colonisation, when the Indigenous community was forced to speak English.

The language was revived in the 1990s and has been taught across the state ever since.

Three local school children, who have been learning the language, were chosen to be involved in the series.

Seth Gardiner, 11, has been learning palawa kani for three years.

“[I find it] fun because you get to interact with other people and speak our own language,” he said.

“Our alphabet is different to English, we don’t have some of the letters.

“We went to the studio and we had to stand in front of the microphones and we had to go over our script again and again until it was perfect.

“The character I’m playing is … in a wheelchair and his favourite animal is kangaroos and he’s doing show and tell.”

Peta Cabalza, 10, has also been learning the language for several years.

“It can be a tricky language,” she said. “It was really nice to be able to do the voices.”

Twelve-year-old Skye Cox was also involved.

The Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre (TAC) describes palawa kani as being “the revived form of the original Tasmanian Aboriginal languages. It incorporates authentic elements of the original languages remembered by Tasmanian [Aboriginal peoples] from the 19th to the 21st centuries. It also draws on an extensive body of historical and linguistic research”.

“There are no living speakers of the original Tasmanian languages.

“Spoken records of the original sounds are limited to a few sounds that can only just be heard when Fanny Cochrane Smith spoke on the records of her songs in 1899.

“So to attempt to recover the original sounds and meanings, we have to start from written records made by early Europeans of the sounds they heard, and the meanings they thought they understood when they heard our ancestors speak.”

Keeping the language alive

Rosetta Thomas, a youth language worker at the TAC’s Launceston office, is one of several Tasmanian adults who voice the other characters in the episode.

She started learning palawa kani on Cape Barren Island when she was 12, and is now passing on her language skills to school children.

“Language is a really big part of our history and our culture and it means a lot to us and it’s great to pass on to the children, so it can be happening for future generations,” she said.

Ms Thomas said the cartoon was a great opportunity for the kids to showcase the language to a wider audience.)

“They’re famous, so they say. They’re super-excited. The kids who’re involved have worked really hard for years,” she said.

“I think it’s fabulous for the community, for families, for children to be able to view this for future years and see how far we’ve come from starting language learning in the late 1990s to where it is today.”

The lack of a cartoon speaking to Indigenous kids in Aboriginal language had irked the show’s director, Tasmanian Tony Thorne.

“Never before has an Australian animated show targeted an Indigenous four- to six-year-old audience. As an Indigenous person this seemed wrong,” he said.

The series, being screened on NITV, involved animators from Hobart company Blue Rocket and received financial support from Screen Tasmania.

7.VIC VAHS Healthy Lifestyle Team celebrates NRL Indigenous Round

 

The Healthy Lifestyle Team celebrated the Indigenous round at the NRL in Brisbane with a joint Deadly Choices and Victorian Aboriginal Health Service guernsey worn by the kids at the half time entertainment! #DeadlyChoices #VAHSHLT #StaySmokeFree Brisbane Broncos #IndigenousRound Melbourne Storm Gold Coast Titans Manly Warringah Sea Eagles

8. NT Miwajtj Health : Unfolding public health emergency in north-east Arnhem Land

“If these children don’t stop, they will have a very serious brain damage issue,” 

In an effort to educate young people about the dangers of sniffing, Miwatj’s mental health team has been meeting with the families of those involved.

It has also developed a poster in English and Yolngu Matha, which explains that continued sniffing could lead to death.

“The community has taken steps and are still looking at other steps to stop what is happening,”

Joan Djamalaka Dhamarrandji, an Aboriginal health practitioner at Miwatj Health ( Member of AMSANT and NACCHO ) which runs clinics across north-east Arnhem Land.

Authorities are warning of an unfolding public health emergency in north-east Arnhem Land, where dozens of young people are recording dangerously high lead levels after sniffing aviation fuel.

Security camera vision obtained by the ABC shows children climbing onto the fuselage of planes on Elcho Island and siphoning avgas from fuel tanks in the wings.

Watch vision here

“If these children don’t stop, they will have a very serious brain damage issue,” said Joan Djamalaka Dhamarrandji, an Aboriginal health practitioner at Miwatj Health, which runs clinics across north-east Arnhem Land.

Petrol sniffing is not uncommon in remote communities, but rarely does it involve avgas, which contains lead.

At least 70 young people on Elcho Island are known to have sniffed the volatile substance, with the youngest believed to be seven years old.

About 30 more young people have elevated lead levels at Gapuwiyak.

Children in Milingimbi are also believed to be sniffing avgas.

Nine children and one adult have been transported from the region to Royal Darwin Hospital for medical treatment.

“This is a public health emergency,” said Dr Lucas de Toca, the chief health officer for Miwatj Health.

“We are talking about a high number of children with high blood lead levels.”

Yolngu leaders on Elcho Island are deeply concerned and have held community meetings in an effort to end the problem.

“Our kids are ending up in hospital by getting infected by chemicals which is bad for them,” said John Gurrumgurrum Burarrwanga from Makarr Dhuni, an organisation which represents clan groups on Elcho Island.

Lead levels of sniffers well above health guidelines

National health guidelines require investigations of blood lead levels higher than five micrograms per decilitre.

The majority of Elcho Island sniffers have levels six to 10 times that amount.

“We are seeing levels that are almost unprecedented in current society,” Dr de Toca said.

The health risk is particularly great for children, with lead exposure causing long-term physical and behavioural problems, as well as learning difficulties.

Young people have been breaking into the airport and sniffing avgas since March last year.

The behaviour follows a previous sniffing outbreak, which involved aerosol spray cans, in 2015.

“The issue became an absolute crisis because it became a practically every night event,” said Yvonne Sutherland, the chief executive of the local Marthakal Group, which runs the airport.

Concerns of avgas explosion

Ms Sutherland is concerned not only for the health of the children, but also the safety of aircraft.

There is also the real risk of an explosion involving avgas, which is extremely flammable.

“If we are not careful, and this is probably one of my highest concerns … we may have a fireball that will be just devastating for everybody,” Ms Sutherland said.

Marthakal has taken numerous steps to prevent access to avgas, including increased security lighting and CCTV coverage at the airport.

It also tried relocating three of its charter planes each night to Nhulunbuy, hundreds of kilometres away, over a two-week period last year.

But at a cost of $32,000 for the fortnight, it was an unsustainable measure.

Hopes guard dog will curtail break-ins

The Department of Chief Minister has now provided $70,000 for a guard dog and security officer to be stationed at the airport for 10 hours each night over the next three months.

“That’s been extremely successful,” Ms Sutherland said.

“There has not been a single incursion into the airport since the security guard was installed.”

Marthakal believes building a high-secure facility to lock its planes in overnight would be the best long-term solution.

That would cost about $400,000, but Ms Sutherland said it would be money well spent.

“If the avgas [sniffing] continues, the impost on the health and disability budget will be enormous,” she said.

‘Kids are important’

In an effort to educate young people about the dangers of sniffing, Miwatj’s mental health team has been meeting with the families of those involved.

It has also developed a poster in English and Yolngu Matha, which explains that continued sniffing could lead to death.

“The community has taken steps and are still looking at other steps to stop what is happening,” Ms Dhamarrandji said.

Community leaders want extra government funding for local staff to expand health education campaigns in Yolgnu Matha, as well as extra recreational programs to keep young people on the island engaged.

“Kids are very important to our life because they are the future generations,” Mr Burarrwanga said.

“So we don’t want these things happening in the community or elsewhere.”

The Northern Territory Government says it has set up a “critical response” involving all stakeholders affected by avgas sniffing.

“Any volatile substance abuse is very dangerous and concerning,” said Jim Rogers from the NT Department of Chief Minister.

“However the emergence of avgas sniffing and the potential long-term consequences of elevated blood lead levels is a significant concern.”

 

NACCHO Aboriginal Youth Health : Youth programs deliver a social return of more than $4.50 to every dollar of investment

 

” The report found the programs resulted in improved health outcomes and self-esteem, greater engagement with education and training, and increased school attendance and literacy.

They also saw a decrease in anti-social and criminal behaviour, reduced drug and alcohol abuse, and fewer children sentenced to youth detention. Relationships between children and their families, the community and authorities also improved.

Well-funded and consistent youth programs deliver a social return of more than $4.50 to every dollar of investment, a report on Northern Territory services has found.”

Nous Group consulting firm, examined three youth programs in Utopia, Hermannsburg, and Yuendumu, which each had “different levels of program size, resourcing and sophistication of activities

Report by Helen Davidson The Guardian

Photo above : Children play in Utopia, where the youth programs were forecast to return $3.48 for every dollar spent. Photograph: Getty Images

Download the report HERE

The study, on the impact of youth programs in remote central Australia, found that, with enough support and effort, youth programs provided significant support to children, their families and communities, as well as the broader health, education and justice systems.

They also actively reduced rates of crime and drug and alcohol abuse among young people.

The report, presented in Canberra on Tuesday, comes amid ongoing issues with youth crime and substance abuse in the Northern Territory, and skyrocketing rates of incarceration – particularly among Indigenous youth – across the country.

The royal commission into the protection and detention of children in the NT has spent recent weeks hearing of the importance of early intervention in stopping the cycle of criminal behaviour and incarceration.

It found all three were forecast to create a positive return over the next three years, ranging from $3.48 in Utopia to $4.56 in Yuendumu.

The study said a successful youth program was “reliant on stable and skilled youth workers, regular and consistent activities and community involvement in the design and delivery of the program”.

“Creating conditions that can deliver these prerequisites in the remote environment takes resourcing, time and skilled support,” it said. “However, if time, resourcing and support is insufficient, there is a high risk that youth programs will be unable to produce the value identified in this study.”

The Warlpiri Youth Development Aboriginal Corporation (Wydac) – formerly known as the Mt Theo program – was found to have the biggest return.

Based on Nous’s social return on investment formula, it had a projected a social return worth $14.14m for a two-year investment of $3.01m in 2017/18 and 2019/20.

Wydac, in the community of Yuendumu, 300km north-west of Alice Springs, employs seven staff and has up to 120 young Indigenous trainees, a number of whom go on to become youth workers themselves, Wydac said.

The Hermannsburg youth program, which has run since the mid-1990s but saw increased funding from 2007/08, also saw positive outcomes and a projected return of $8.05m of social value on a funding investment of $1.95m.

In Utopia, a region home to fewer than 300 people about 250km north-east of Alice Springs, a youth program, which centred on a drop-in centre and with emphasis on sport and recreational activities, has operated consistently since

The anticipated investment of $1.02m in the Utopia program was forecast to generate about $3.56m of social value.

The findings were guided and verified by a stakeholder group that included the youth programs, regional shire councils and territory and federal government departments.

The report was commissioned by the Central Australian Youth Link Up Service (Caylus), which was set up by the federal government in 2002 to address an epidemic of petrol sniffing in remote central Australian communities. It now coordinates and supports youth programs and responds to sniffing and other substance abuse outbreaks across the region.

The organisation has consistently maintained that substance abuse issues must addressed on both the supply and demand sides, and youth programs effectively addressed demand.

“Stakeholders in remote communities across our region consistently state that youth programs are essential to give kids good things to do, keeping them busy and away from trouble,” it said in the report.

Blair McFarland, co-manager of operations at Caylus, said it had been difficult to get successive federal and governments on board with the idea that consistency in delivery is key. “No one seems to have understood the value of those youth programs – partly because [people in cities] don’t understand the context of where they’re happening,” he said.

“Communities of 300 people with no coffee shops, movie theatres, and local parks which are dusty things which you could fry eggs on in summer.”

In these places, where extreme poverty, high unemployment, and low engagement with Centrelink support are also factors, there is “literally nothing else” for young people to occupy themselves with without a youth program.

“In that context the youth programs were a little island of hope, it demonstrated to the little kids that somebody cared about them,” he said.

McFarland said there had been vast improvements over the past 15 years but there were still big gaps in resourcing – and the situation was far better in central Australia than in the Top End.

“We’re hoping governments think about that and focus on every kid having the opportunity to attend a youth program.”

The Nous Group principal, Robert Griew, said his company partnered with Caylus as part of its work supporting community organisations.

“The big takeout message [from the report] is the longer those programs are sustained and supported you get an increasing return,” he said. “This is just really fabulous news and an opportunity for the community and government to invest in working on the ground and largely employing Indigenous staff.”

NACCHO TOP #IHMayDay17 #JobAlerts : This week in Aboriginal Health : Doctors, Aboriginal Health Workers

This weeks #Jobalerts for #IHMayDay17

Please note  : Before completing a job application check with the ACCHO that job is still available

1. AHMRC NSW CEO Chief Executive Officer

2.VAHS  Health Promotion Team

3 -8 http://www.iuih.org.au/Jobs/IUIH-Vacancies

9. Sunrise Health NT Mental Health Registered Nurse

10.Sunrise Health Program Coordinator (PHaMs)

11-14 .Danila Dilba Health Service Darwin 

15.Urapuntja Community  NT : Psychologist 

16. Ceduna Koonibba Aboriginal Health Service – GP

17.Galangoor Duwalami Primary Health Care Service (2 GP’s)

18 . Congress Alice Springs :Remote Area Nurses/Aboriginal Health Practitioners 

How to submit a Indigenous Health #jobalert ? 

NACCHO Affiliate , Member , Government Department or stakeholder

If you have a job vacancy in Indigenous Health 

Email to Colin Cowell NACCHO Media

Tuesday by 4.30 pm for publication each Wednesday

1. AHMRC NSW CEO Chief Executive Officer

2.VAHS Health Promotion Team

Are you looking for something different?
Passionate about health and well being?

Check out this new position open with the VAHS Healthy Lifestyle Team based at VAHS Preston.

3-11 For all Job Ads see links and downloads HERE

3.IUIH Senior Legal Officer

Applications close 9am on Thursday 18 May 2017

The role of Senior Legal Officer will include:

1. Overseeing the establishment of the IUIH Legal Service with core components including:
2. Direct legal services – advice and casework
3. Information and referral service
4. Legal education and development – organisation and community

This is an exciting opportunity to join a committed team working from Bowen Hills and across the Moreton Bay region as required.

EOI-Download

Enquiries about the position can be directed to hr@iuih.org.au

Applications (resume and brief covering letter addressing the key requirements in the PD) are to be submitted via SEEK to be considered.

4.IUIH Indigenous Outreach Worker (CTG)

Applications close 9am on Thursday 18 May 2017

Based at the Salisbury office, the Indigenous Outreach Worker will support improved access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to available health care services in the Metro Brisbane South region.  This includes effective liaison with local Indigenous communities, identification of barriers to access, implementation of practical solutions and provision of assistance to identified Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to manage primary health care related needs.

EOI-Download

Enquiries about the position can be directed to Helen Quelch by email at helen.quelch@iuih.org.au

Applications (resume and brief covering letter addressing the key requirements in the EOI) are to be submitted via SEEK to be considered.

5.IUIH Psychologist – Child focus

Applications close 9am on Friday 19 May 2017

Working from MATSICHS Caboolture you will provide, in accordance with the Institute Model of Care, culturally appropriate clinical care and supportive health services to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community as a member of a multi-disciplinary primary health care team, ensuring effective assessment, service delivery and referral practices are delivered in accordance with best psychology practice.

EOI-Download

Enquiries about the position can be directed to Jess O’Reilly by email at Jessica.OReilly@iuih.org.au

Applications (resume and brief covering letter addressing the key requirements in the EOI) are to be submitted to hr@iuih.org.au

6.IUIH Project Officer (CTG) – Brisbane North

Applications close 9am on Friday 19 May 2017

The Project Officer will provide support to mainstream general practice to improve access to private general practice for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people. This will include working directly with a defined number of approved mainstream general practices in the familiarisation of CTG initiatives designed to support these general practices in the provision of appropriate and timely care for Indigenous people in their region, especially those at risk of or who already have a chronic disease.

This is a great opportunity to join a committed multi-disciplinary team working across the Moreton Bay region and other IUIH premises as required.

EOI-Download

Enquiries about the position can be directed to Helen Quelch by email at helen.quelch@iuih.org.au

Applications (resume and brief covering letter addressing the key requirements in the EOI) are to be submitted via SEEK to be considered.

7.IUIH Project Officer (CTG) – Brisbane South

Applications close 9am on Friday 19 May 2017

The Project Officer will provide support to mainstream general practice to improve access to private general practice for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people. This will include working directly with a defined number of approved mainstream general practices in the familiarisation of CTG initiatives designed to support these general practices in the provision of appropriate and timely care for Indigenous people in their region, especially those at risk of or who already have a chronic disease.

This is a great opportunity to join a committed multi-disciplinary team working from Salisbury and other IUIH premises as required.

EOI-Download

Enquiries about the position can be directed to Helen Quelch by email at helen.quelch@iuih.org.au

Applications (resume and brief covering letter addressing the key requirements in the EOI) are to be submitted via SEEK to be considered.

8. IUIH General Practitioner

We are seeking a General Practitioner to provide services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients and families as part of a multi-disciplinary team of medical and health staff, within the operational framework of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community controlled health service.

The position is located at Strathpine clinic although the position may be required to work at other locations within the Moreton region from time to time, including Caboolture, Morayfield and Deception Bay.

EOI-Download

Enquiries about the position can be directed to Layla Scott by email at layla.scott@iuih.org.au

Applications can be addressed to hr@iuih.org.au

9. Sunrise Health NT Mental Health Registered Nurse
About the Organisation

Sunrise Health Service Aboriginal Corporation’s (SHS) main purpose is to improve the health and wellbeing of the people in the region east of Katherine in the Northern Territory using a holistic approach that includes a high standard of medical care, the promotion of social justice and the overcoming of the sickness that affects so many people in the region. This is done through the organisation’s health clinics and health education, mixing together traditional Indigenous culture and the best of mainstream medicine.

Sunrise provides a fulfilling and stimulating work environment in a diverse range of areas for those seeking a career in Indigenous Health.

About the Opportunity

Sunrise Health Service has an extremely rewarding opportunity for a Mental Health Registered Nurse to join their dedicated, multidisciplinary team in the Katherine region, on a full-time basis.

Reporting to the Population Health Program Manager, you will beresponsible for providing expert support to clients requiring mental health care, their families, and the remote based staff providing care.

To be considered, you must be a Registered Nurse with experience in Mental Health and have demonstrated knowledge and skills managing Mental Health conditions.

Although the SHS office is located in Katherine, you will need to live and work in remote communities during the week. SHS provides accommodation for employees living and working in these communities.

Candidates with previous experience in Communicare will be highly regarded.

As this role will see you living and working in remote communities and such you will need a current driver’s license, 4WD drive experience, and the willingness to travel on light aircraft.

Please note: The successful candidates must be willing to undergo a Police Check and a Working With Children Check.

About the Benefits

Your dedication will be rewarded with an attractive remuneration package circa $97,151 – $104,375.

This package includes:

  • 6 weeks leave per year;
  • Up to 10 days study leave;
  • Salary packaging options;
  • Full support from the health team; and
  • Relocation assistance

Please Note: to apply, you will be required to upload a current resume as well as respond to the questions below.

Don’t miss this opportunity to direct a dedicated team in producing improved mental health outcomes for the community –

Apply Now

10.Sunrise Health Program Coordinator (PHaMs)

Program Coordinator (PHaMs)
About the Organisation

Sunrise Health Service Aboriginal Corporation’s (SHS) main purpose is to improve the health and wellbeing of the people in the region east of Katherine in the Northern Territory using a holistic approach that includes a high standard of medical care, the promotion of social justice and the overcoming of the sickness that affects so many people in the region. This is done through the organisation’s health clinics and health education, mixing together traditional Indigenous culture and the best of mainstream medicine.

About the Program

The Personal Helpers and Mentors (PHaMs) service aims to provide increased opportunities for recovery for people whose lives are severely affected by mental illness. This Program takes a strengths-based recovery approach and assists people aged 16 years and over whose ability to manage their daily activities and to live independently in the community is impacted because of severe mental illness.

About the Opportunity

Sunrise Health Service has an extremely rewarding opportunity for a Program Coordinator (PHaMs) to join their dedicated, multidisciplinary team in Katherine, on a full-time basis.

Reporting to the Population Health Program Manager, you will beresponsible for leading, managing, and coordinating of the Personal Helpers and Mentors Program (PHaMs). This program assists by providing a range of skill development and support programs and is non-clinical in its focus.

To be considered, you must hold a tertiary qualification in a relevant Mental Health discipline with a demonstrated ability to engage and support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in non-clinical Mental Health or related programs. You will also have previous experience in Communicare.

This role will see you living and working in the remote Ngukurr Community and, as such, you will need a current driver’s license, 4WD drive experience, and the willingness to travel on light aircraft.

Please note: The successful candidates must be willing to undergo a Police Check and a Working With Children Check.

About the Benefits

Your dedication will be rewarded with an attractive remuneration package circa $59,085 – $94,110.

This package includes:

  • 6 weeks leave per year;
  • Up to 10 days study leave;
  • Salary packaging options;
  • Full support from the health team; and
  • Relocation assistance

Don’t miss this opportunity to direct a dedicated team in producing improved mental health outcomes for the community –

Apply Now!

11 -14 Danila Dilba Health Service

Danila Dilba Health Service is going through a dynamic period of expansion, growth and review and currently has the following vacancy

We offer:

  • Attractive salary with salary packaging benefits
  • Six weeks annual leave
  • Flexible hours
  • Training and development
COMMUNITY SUPPORT WORKER *$66,322

2 Positions – Full Time – Fixed Term

These positions will work in partnership with Primary Health Care Teams to support individuals and families to build resilience using an approach that builds on community and cultural strengths.

SOCIAL WORKER*$101,200

1 Position – Full Time – Fixed Term

This position is responsible for providing high quality mental health, AOD and social and emotional wellbeing services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

 CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST *$107,666

1 Position – Full Time – Fixed Term

This position is responsible for the provision of high quality mental health and social and emotional wellbeing services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. These services may include clinical evidence based counselling, brief psychological interventions, case management, trauma informed practice and coordination of care/aftercare.

 

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people encouraged to apply.
Danila Dilba Health Service is an Aboriginal community controlled organisation that provides comprehensive, high-quality primary health care and community services to Biluru (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) people in Yilli Rreung (greater Darwin) region.
Details: www.daniladilba.org.au

 

15.Urapuntja Community  NT : Psychologist 

URAPUNTJA HEALTH SERVICE ABORIGINAL CORPORATION

POSITION DESCRIPTION – PYSCHOLOGIST

Title                                     Psychologist

Responsible To                 Clinic Manager

Location                             Amengernternenh Community, Utopia and Ampilatwatja        Community

SUMMARY OF POSITION

The Urapuntja Community is situated on the Sandover Highway some 280 km north east of Alice Springs. Urapuntja Community comprises 16 Outstation communities spread out over some 3230 square km of desert. There are some 900 people who are mainly Anmatyerre and Alyawarra speaking people. Distances to the outstations vary from 5 to 100 kms from the clinic.

Urapuntja Health Service developed from many years of negotiations by Aboriginal people to have their own health service. Urapuntja is a community controlled health service with a Board of Directors which is elected from and by the community at the Annual General Meeting held each year. The Directors meets regularly to discuss issues and make decisions relevant to the Organisation.

The Psychologist position has been funded by the NTPHN to provide services to the residents of both the Urapuntja and Ampilatwatja Health Service areas.

The Psychologist will work as a member of the Social and Emotional Wellbeing Team as well as the clinical team, to provide psychological services addressing the needs of all clients using the bio-psychosocial to community members who self- refer or are referred by a provider. At times the Psychologist will work under the supervision of the Clinic Manager. At other times the Psychologist will be required to work with limited assistance. The Psychologist will be required to travel by 4WD vehicle to provide clinical services to remote outstations in both the Urapuntja and Ampilatwatja Health Service Areas.

 

DUTIES OF THE POSITION

  1. Create, develop and nurture culturally appropriate interactions within Primary Health Care (PHC) teams and with the community.
  2. Develop a positive culture within integrated PHC teams through development of “core” behavioural health skills including cooperative interpersonal relationship building strategies.
  3. Make appropriate referrals to other providers and seek resources to aid team members and community residents.
  4. Perform assessment and provide brief treatment for a wide range of psychological and behavioural health needs using brief therapy.
  5. Maintain currency of job knowledge and skills and assist PHC team members to self-care.
  6. Utilises professional communication and conflict resolution skills with team members, various brief therapeutic modalities including group learning circles, individual, child, family, couples counselling, and family support services.
  7. Direct Caseload that involves documentation and procedural adherence; includes Medicare billing as appropriate and provide identified social and emotional wellbeing services to clients.
  8. Provide evidence-based culturally appropriate interventions (including assessment, therapy and case management) on individual, group and family levels.
  9. Ensure the development of Mental Health Care Plans in collaboration with GP’s, for all eligible clients in the service, and facilitate the provision of co-ordinated clinical care and treatment for referred clients.
  10. Follow defined service quality standards and relevant Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) policies and procedures to ensure high quality, safe services are being provided within a safe workplace.

Further

  1. Contribute to opportunities to Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) processes, quality and service delivery outcomes
  2. Participate in opportunistic and community screening activities
  3. Work with other community health program staff and seek advice and assistance from a General Practitioner
  4. Enter data accurately into the Communicare system
  5. Collect specified data on all client contacts in accordance with Clinic and funding body requirements
  6. Liaise with other staff within Urapuntja Health Service in regards to patient care, referrals and follow up as required
  7. Assist other health staff requiring community, cultural and/or linguistic assistance with clients where culturally appropriate
  8. To provide quality and professional service of care and work ethics at all times
  9. Work within strict confidentiality guidelines, ensuring all client and organisational information is kept secure
  10. Undertake any other duties at the request of the Clinic Manager which are considered relevant to the position and the level of classification

 

SELECTION CRITERIA

Essential

  • Recognised qualifications in Psychology with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) registration to practice as a Psychologist.
  • Proven ability to be self-directed and self-motivated as well as working effectively as a member of a team.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of current issues, standards and trends in the delivery of mental health and social and emotional well-being services to Aboriginal people.
  • Demonstrated recent experience in the mental health and social and emotional wellbeing assessment, treatment and rehabilitation methods appropriate to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) people.
  • Proven ability to be able to develop the behavioural health and working skills required by each employee working within a PHC team.
  • Proficiency in and commitment to the use of electronic information systems for the maintenance of clinical and service delivery records.
  • Hold a current Northern Territory (NT) manual driver’s licence or ability to obtain, ability and willingness to undertake travel by 4WD or light aircraft to remote communities, and capacity to reside in a remote community.
  • A good level of health and fitness that matches the requirements of the role. Note: If so required by UHSAC at any time, you must undergo a satisfactory medical examination (including a pre-employment medical examination) for the purpose of determining whether you are able to perform the inherent requirements of your position. Any such medical examination will be at the employer’s cost, and copies of any medical report will be provided to you. You must advise UHSAC of any illness, injury, disease, or any other matter relating to your health or physical fitness which may prevent you from performing your duties, or which may affect your ability to work safely.
  • Excellent communication skills, in particular the ability to communicate sensitively in a cross-cultural environment
  • Current Drivers Licence
  • Ochre Card (Working with Children Clearance)

 

Desirable

    • Masters in Clinical Psychology qualification.
    • Awareness of/sensitivity to Aboriginal culture and history
    • Experience in using a Patient Information and Recall System and in data collection and analysis including the ability to use word processing, spreadsheet, and database software to produce effective reports.
    • Previous experience working with primary health care teams.
  • Experience working in the area of Indigenous Primary Health

 

  • Highly developed cross cultural communication skills and willingness to take cultural advice from Aboriginal staff
  • Previous experience working with remote Aboriginal communities and Aboriginal organisations and groups

 

16.Ceduna Koonibba Aboriginal Health Service – GP

Medical practice in rural and remote Australia

 

17. Galangoor Duwalami Primary Health Care Service (2 GP’s)

 

Galangoor Duwalami Primary Healthcare Service is an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community controlled primary health care service, operating in both Hervey Bay and Maryborough, servicing the entire Fraser Coast area.

Galangoor Duwalami collaborates with health and well-being partner agencies to enable integrated continuity of care for the community, and continue to work to contribute to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health policy and program reform in Queensland to address the Burden of disease and Close the Gap in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health

General Practitioner (GP) two positions available

This is an exciting opportunity to join an innovative and flexible employer, enthusiastic and committed team and make a direct impact on improved health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the Fraser Coast area.

The Practice:

Galangoor Duwalami (meaning a ‘happy meeting place’) is located on the Fraser Coast in sunny Queensland, with two clinics (Hervey Bay and Maryborough). Originally established in 2007 we offer a comprehensive suite of Health Services within the Fraser Coast region.

The Hervey Bay clinic is situated at the beachside, while a newly built practice in the heart of Historical Maryborough, offers exceptional facilities with 10 consulting rooms including a mums and bubs room, new equipment and large reception. The practice is Community Controlled and has a well-established clientele and reports indicate continued growth.

This is a rewarding prospect for a compassionate, engaging, visionary and thorough General Practitioner with an ability to work within a diverse interdisciplinary team exhibiting admirable communication skills.

  • Two positions available – 2 Part Time – hours negotiable OR 1 Full Time and 1 Part Time
  • Well balanced working environment – Monday to Friday from 0830 to 1700.
  • No on-call requirements
  • Competitive Salary Package
  • Salary packaging
  • Annual Leave plus Study Leave
  • 9.5% Superannuation Entitlement

Key Requirements:

Must Have:

  • Qualified Medical Practitioner, holding current registration with the Medical Board of Australia
  • Eligible for unrestricted Medicare Provider Number

Download this Information GP Advertisement

Application Process:

A Position Description is available by email. All applications, including a covering letter, are to be e-mailed to: ann.woolcock@gdphcs.com.au

For further details regarding this position please contact Ann Woolcock on 07 41945554.

 

18. Congress Alice Springs :Remote Area Nurses/Aboriginal Health Practitioners 

REMOTE AREA NURSES/ABORIGINAL HEALTH PRACTITIONERS

Utju and Santa teresa

  • Base salary: $72,364 – $106,314 (p.a)
  • Total effective package: $94,168 – $133,712 (p.a)*
  • Fixed term 2 year contract

Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (Congress) has over 40 years’ experience providing comprehensive primary health care for Aboriginal people living in Central Australia. Congress is seeking Remote Area Nurses/Aboriginal Health Practitioners who are interested in making a genuine contribution to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal people.

Remote Area Nurses/Aboriginal Health Practitioners are integral members of the Congress Health Service, providing high quality, comprehensive and culturally safe clinical care for the Various Congress Auspice Remote Sites. The positions work within a multidisciplinary team to ensure high standards of integrated clinical care and client flow.

Central Australia offers a unique lifestyle in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere in the heart of Australia. Its attractions include Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Watarrka (Kings Canyon) and a host of other world heritage sites.

As well as a wonderful lifestyle and rewarding work, Congress offers the following:

  • Competitive salaries
  • Six (6) weeks annual leave
  • 9.5% superannuation
  • Generous salary packaging
  • A strong commitment to Professional Development
  • Family friendly conditions
  • Relocation assistance (where applicable)
  • District allowance and Remote Benefits

For more information on these positions please contact Clinic Managers, Jason King on (08) 8956 0911 and email: jason.king@caac.org.au for Santa Teresa and Kimberley Williamson on (08) 8956 7308 and email: kimberley.williamson@caac.org.au

Applications close: Monday 22 May 2017.

*Total effective package includes: base salary, district allowance, superannuation, leave loading, and estimated tax saving from salary packaging options.

Contact Human Resources on (08) 8959 4774 or mailto:vacancy@caac.org.aufor more information. Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.

For more information about jobs at Congress visit www.caac.org.au/hr.

To apply for this job go to: http://www.caac.org.au/hr & enter ref code: 3480143.

Aboriginal #heart #stroke Health : $15 million #HealthBudget17 Investment in #PhysicalActivity and #healthylifestyles to #takethepressuredown

“We walk from the pier to the swimming pool, but everyone walks their own pace and distance.

Before walking, an Aboriginal health worker takes the blood pressure of the walkers to let them know how their general health is.

The group was about “more than just walking”, with general health checks and healthy food offered as part of the weekly meet-up .We have young and old, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, and everyone gets on really well.”

Community liaison officer Joe Malone : Run jointly by Heart Foundation Walking and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Community Health Service Northgate QLD , the meetings help keep local residents active.

Read Full story HERE

To find a local walking group, head to the Heart Foundation Walking website or call 1300 362 787

NACCHO Aboriginal Health : ” High blood pressure is a silent killer ” new Heart Foundation guidelines

“Disturbingly, about half of Australian adults are not physically active enough to gain the health benefits of exercise. This includes just under half of young people aged 25 to 34 years old. This puts them at higher risk of heart disease, stroke, some cancers and dementia in later life.

“But even moderate exercise is like a wonder drug. Being active for as little as 30 minutes a day, five days a week, can reduce risk of death from heart attack by a third, as well as help you sleep better, feel better, improve your strength and balance, and maintain your bone density. It also manages your weight, blood pressure and blood cholesterol. So we are delighted by the news of the Prime Minister’s $10 million walking challenge.”

Heart Foundation National CEO, Adjunct Professor John Kelly see full below

 ” The Stoke Foundation is excited to announce that the Stroke Foundation is partnering with Priceline Pharmacy for the 2017 Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check campaign.

Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check will take place Wednesday 17 May – Wednesday 14 June with a target to deliver 80,000 free health checks at over 320 locations around Australia including Priceline Pharmacy stores, selected shopping centres and Queensland Know your numbers sites.

Find your nearest free health check location HERE or your Aboriginal Community Controlled Health ( ACCHO )

Heart Foundation applauds Budget funding for Healthy Heart package

At a glance

Regular walking or other physical activity reduces:

  • All-cause mortality by 30%
  • Heart disease and stroke by 35%
  • Type 2 diabetes by 42%
  • Colon cancer by 30%
  • Breast cancer by 20%
  • Weight, blood pressure and blood cholesterol

The Heart Foundation welcomes a $10 million commitment in the Federal Budget to get more Australians active by investing in a walking revolution, and $5 million dedicated to helping GPs to encourage patients to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt has announced that $10 million over two years will be allocated to the Heart Foundation to lead the Prime Minister’s Walk for Life Challenge, which will support up to 300,000 Australians to adopt the easy way to better health – regular walking – by 2019.

“Physical inactivity takes an immense toll on the Australian community, causing an estimated 14,000 premature deaths a year – similar to that caused by smoking,” said Heart Foundation National CEO, Adjunct Professor John Kelly.

Heart Foundation Walking is Australia’s only national network of free walking groups. It has helped more than 80,000 Australians walk their way to better health since the program began in 1995, and currently has nearly 30,000 active participants. “We need to inspire Australians to be more active, and walking groups are a cheap, fun and easy way for them to get moving,” Professor Kelly said.

The Heart Foundation wants to see everyone ‘Move More and Sit Less’, including school students, sedentary workers and older Australians. “So we welcome the Government’s National Sports Plan, also announced in the Budget, to encourage physical activity at all levels, from community participation to elite sports.

“The Heart Foundation is also pleased to see a renewed commitment of more than $18 million to the National Rheumatic Fever Strategy, a critical program if we are to Close the Gap in health for Indigenous communities,” said Professor Kelly. “And we welcome the listing of the new heart failure medication Entresto on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, making it affordable for many more Australians, as well as funding for research into preventative care, and the development of a National Sport Plan, with its emphasis on participation.”

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, who experience and die from cardiovascular disease at much higher rates than other Australians. 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, when compared with other Australians, are:

  • 1.3 times as likely to have cardiovascular disease (1)
  • three times more likely to have a major coronary event, such as a heart attack (2)
  • more than twice as likely to die in hospital from coronary heart disease (2)
  • 19 times as likely to die from acute rheumatic fever and chronic rheumatic heart Disease (3)
  • more likely to smoke, have high blood pressure, be obese, have diabetes and have end-stage renal disease.(3)

From Heart Foundation website

 

NACCHO Aboriginal #HealthBudget17 : #Budget2017 Are we investing enough in #healthyfutures to #closethegap ?

‘It is unacceptable that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples continue to have poorer health and a much lower life expectancy than the general population, and that this Budget has overlooked that massive inequity.

COAG’s recent re‑commitment to prioritising improving outcomes for Australia’s First Peoples should have been supported by appropriate funding and support for locally developed responses.

‘A commitment should have been made to appropriately fund the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023 and its Implementation Plan”

 AHHA Health Budget 2017

 ” It is disappointing that Indigenous health interventions must also wait for the “third wave” of reform in another two years. However, the Closing the Gap falls within the Prime Minister’s portfolio.”

PHAA Press release

” There are no real funding commitments in this Budget to Close the Gap of Indigenous disadvantage. This is a disgrace. In fact there is a decrease of $16 million in National Partnership for Remote Housing funding to the NT.”

NT Federal Labor politicians

 ” Reconciliation Australia is concerned with the lack of a clear plan to close the gap, and to take the next steps toward constitutional recognition and treaty.

The Prime Minister’s latest Closing the Gap report, which revealed six of seven targets are not on track, is clear proof that targeted and sustained resources are needed to address Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, education and employment disparities.”

Justin Mohamed CEO Reconciliation Australia and former NACCHO chair

 Picture above from Government Budget Brochure Page 15  Investing in a healthy Australia but does not mention Aboriginal /Indigenous Health.

“We acknowledge extra funding for the Rheumatic Fever Strategy, in response to calls in the 2016 AMA Indigenous Health Report Card.”

Dr Gannon said that tonight’s Health Budget effectively ends the era of disastrous co-payment and Medicare freeze policies, and creates an environment for informed and genuine debate about the numerous other areas of unfinished business in the health portfolio.

“We now need to shift our attention to gaining positive outcomes for public hospitals, prevention, Indigenous health, mental health, aged care, rural health, private health insurance, palliative care, and the medical workforce,”

Dr Michael Gannon AMA president  

“We are also particularly pleased that the Government has listened closely to RDAA and opted not to include the Indigenous Health Incentive and Procedural GP Practice Incentive as part of the Practice Incentives Program (PIP) Quality Improvement Incentive measure.

“This will mean that only general practices that are actively providing Indigenous healthcare and/or procedural GP services to their communities will continue to have access to the important funding support provided under these specific areas of the PIP.”

Rural Doctors Press Release rural doctors health Budget2017

 ” Prioritising Mental Health, Preventive Health and Sport

Significantly, the 2017-18 Budget puts a strong focus on mental health and preventive health-key elements of our Long-Term National Health Plan.

The Turnbull Government is building on its mental health reforms by delivering another boost of more than $170 million for mental health support, treatment and research.

This includes $80.0 million of additional funding, contingent on matched commitments from the states and territories, to maintain community psychosocial services for people with mental illness who do not qualify for assistance through the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

People living in rural and remote regions of Australia will now receive significantly improved access to psychologists, under a new $9 .1 million telehealth initiative set to roll-out later this year.

And we are providing $11.1 million to prevent suicide in specific locations – hotspots – where suicide incidents repeatedly occur. Crisis help signage and infrastructure such as barriers will deter suicide attempts, and the capacity of existing crisis line services to respond to cries for help will be improved.”

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP Minister for Health Full Press Release

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP Budget 2017 Press Release

Health Budget 2017–18

This page provides access to stakeholder information on the Health Portfolio’s 2017-18 Budget measures

Medicine’ budget – not a health budget: Where is the investment on tackling obesity, tobacco and alcohol?

The Prime Minister’s rhetoric on prevention falls way short when looking at the expenditure in the budget. In February the Prime Minister announced a focus on prevention and was followed shortly after by the Health Minister commitment to “tackling obesity”. The three most significant causes of ill health in Australia are tobacco, alcohol and poor nutrition – yet these barely receive a mention in the health budget.

The Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) expressed disappointment in the lack of investment in prevention. Expenditure on prevention is likely to remain close to 1.5% of the health budget while the major issues of tobacco, obesity and alcohol remain with minimal increases in funding compared to the investment to remove the freeze on the Medicare rebate Australia is lagging considerably compared to places like Canada and New Zealand where over 5% of the health budget is committed to prevention”.

Michael Moore, CEO of the PHAA.Statement from the Public Health Association of Australia

Preventive health 

It is disappointing to see that there will effectively be no increase to the percentage of funding for preventive health in the Budget. This is particularly disappointing considering the announcement by the Prime Minister and the Health Minister in February that there would be a new focus by Government on prevention.

By directing health funding toward the root causes of diseases, particularly those which are largely attributable to environmental factors such as obesity, alcohol and tobacco the general health of the population will increase significantly. This is why the PHAA proposes that preventive health should compare favourably to countries like Canada and New Zealand with prevention at 5% of the Health Budget.

Tobacco

Although there was some good news on tobacco the failure to provide adequate funding for public education on tobacco is deeply disappointing. This is an area where the government has dropped the ball in recent years. They receive around $10bn p.a. from tobacco revenue, but have failed to restore funding for the crucial media campaigns needed to underpin smoking prevention, especially for people in vulnerable and lower socio-economic groups where smokers are concentrated”.

Obesity – a missed opportunity

“Obesity is currently the second highest contributor to the burden of disease in Australia which costs billions to the public and private sectors annually, and it’s time we seek a proactive solution,” according to Michael Moore.

However, PHAA cautions that these are not the types of structural interventions required to fully address the problem, which are necessary if the Government is genuinely committed to tackling obesity as was announced by the Prime Minister in February this year.

“A levy on sugary drinks has proven benefits which we’ve seen in other nations like Mexico which have adopted this approach, therefore it is an essential preliminary step toward controlling the obesity epidemic”, Mr Moore said.

The introduction of a sugar levy would also have delivered additional funds which would have allowed further investment in prevention around obesity and other diet related disease.

The PHAA strongly advocates for a national, coordinated plan to tackle the problem of obesity in Australia, which has become a leading issue due to its high prevalence and severe associated health and social impacts.

Budget 2017 sees Medicare rebate freeze slowly lifted and more funding for the NDIS: experts respond Via The Conversation

Tonight’s Budget is a winner for doctors and pharmacy interests as the Medicare rebate freeze is lifted and a new collaborative approach is embedded in a series of compacts with industry groups, but time will tell whether this will contribute to building a healthy Australia,’

As expected, the government has announced a progressive lifting of the Medicare rebate freeze. Together with removing the bulk-billing incentive for diagnostic imaging and pathology services, as well as an increase in the PBS co-payment and related changes, this will cost a total of A$2.2 billion over the forward estimates.

Other announcements include:

  • From July 1, 2019, an increase in the Medicare levy from 2% to 2.5% of taxable income, with the extra half a percent directed towards the NDIS
  • $1.2 billion for new and amended listings on the PBS, including more than $510 million for a new medicine for patients with chronic heart failure
  • a A$2.8 billion increase in hospitals funding over forward estimates
  • $115 million for mental health, including funding for rural tele-health psychological services, mental health research and suicide prevention
  • $1.4 billion for health research, including $65.9 million this year to help research into children’s cancer.

All up, these commitments equate to A$10 billion.

Medicare rebate freeze

Stephen Duckett, Health Program Director, Grattan Institute

As foreshadowed in pre-budget leaks, the government is slowly unthawing the Medicare rebate freeze, but at a snail’s pace. At a cost of A$1 billion over the forward estimates, indexation for Medicare items will be introduced in four stages, starting with bulk-billing incentives from July 1, 2017.

General practitioners and specialists will wait another year – until July 1, 2018 – for indexation to start up again for consultations, which make up the vast bulk of general practice revenue. Indexation for specialist and allied health consultations is slated to start from July 1, 2019.

Certain diagnostic imaging items (such as x-rays) will be the last cab off the rank. Indexation will start up again from July 1, 2020.

There is no mention of reintroducing indexation for pathology items. This may be due to the recognition that there is money to be saved in pathology.

Regardless of the reaction of medical lobby groups, it is too early to tell whether this glacially slow reintroduction of indexation will be enough to keep bulk-billing rates at their current levels. Practice costs and income expectations of staff have not increased dramatically over the freeze period as the Consumer Price Index has been moving slowly. But each additional day of a freeze means costs and revenues fall further out of alignment.

The jury will be out for a while on whether reintroduction of indexation is enough to restore the Coalition’s tarnished Medicare credentials with voters.

Certainly, the slow phase-in may attract cynicism, with a legitimate perception the government is doing the minimum necessary and at the slowest pace to ensure the issue is off the agenda before a 2019 election.

There is no sign in the budget that the government has sought any trade-offs from the medical profession in exchange for the reintroduction of indexation, so we will have to wait to put in place better foundations for primary care reform.

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

Helen Dickinson, Associate Professor, Public Service Research Group, UNSW

Since its inception, a number of bitter political battles have been fought over how the National Disability Insurance Scheme should be funded. Many have been nervous the current Productivity Commission review of the costs of the scheme could lead to a scaling back of the NDIS before it is fully operational.

The NDIS operates under a complex funding arrangement split between federal, state and territory governments. Until now it has been unclear where the federal component of this commitment will come from, and a significant gap was emerging from the middle of 2019.

Today’s budget promises to fill this funding gap, in part through an increase by half a percentage point in the Medicare levy from 2% to 2.5% of taxable income. Of the revenue raised, one-fifth will be directed into the NDIS Savings Fund (a special account that will ensure federal cost commitments are met).

A commitment has also been made to provide funding to establish an independent NDIS quality and safeguards commission to oversee the delivery of quality and safe services for all NDIS participants.

This will have three core functions: regulation and registration of providers; complaints handling; and reviewing and reporting on restrictive practices. While such an agency will be welcomed by many, the devil will be in the detail as to whether it is possible to deliver this in practice.

But how has the Government prioritised Indigenous spending?

NITV Report

The Indigenous Affairs Minister, Nigel Scullion, said in a statement that his department’s major focus is to drive jobs, growth and investment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people by supporting them into employment and growing the Indigenous business sector.

Here’s how Indigenous Affairs measured up.

INDIGENOUS BUSINESS

The government will redirect $146.9 million over four years from Indigenous Business Australia to the Department of the Prime Minister to facilitate the delivery of innovative and effective support for Indigenous businesses and entrepreneurs.

Services will include workshops, business planning and training. The measure will also provide tailored loan products, including capital assistance for Indigenous entrepreneurs who would like to establish or grow their business

CASHLESS DEBIT CARD

The government will also extend and expand  cashless debit card trials.

The two trial sites in Ceduna, South Australia, and the East Kimberley, in Western Australia, will be extended for a further 12 months, until 30 June 2018.

Another two new locations will be trialled from 1 September 2017

CLOSING THE GAP

To help close the employment gap, the government says it will inject $55.7 million over the next five years to reach the employment target.

The government will provide $55.7 million over five years from 2016-17 to help meet their Closing the Gap employment targets for Indigenous Australians. This measure will enable stronger engagement by employment service providers with Indigenous communities and provide enhanced support for Indigenous participants.

This measure includes:

• $33.2 million over five years from 2016-17 to deliver pre-employment training and mentoring for Indigenous participants, and to expand access to the Transition to Work program to all Indigenous job seekers aged 21 years or under;

• $17.6 million over five years from 2016-17 to trial additional employment assistance to Indigenous prisoners, to ensure they are provided with better preparation and assistance to transition from prison to an employment assistance program after their release. The measure includes additional support in the immediate post-release period, as part of the government’s response to COAG’s 2016 Prison to Work Report;

• $5.0 million over four years from 2017-18 to support the implementation of community-designed and delivered employment services in Yarrabah, Queensland.

• Immediate access to increased wage subsidies (from $6,500 to $10,000) for Indigenous participants to better support their employment outcomes, with funding to be met from within the existing Wage Subsidies Funding Pool.

To help close the gap in literacy achievement, the government will provide $5.9 million over four years from 2017-18 to trial the use of digital applications to improve English literacy outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. The trial will be undertaken over two years, 2019 and 2020, in 20 preschools around Australia.

POLICIES & PROGRAMS

The government will provide $52.9 million over four years to implement a whole-of-government research and evaluation strategy for policies and programs affecting Indigenous Australians, including the establishment of an Indigenous Research Fund.

This measure includes three components:

• $40.0 million over four years from 2017-18 to strengthen evaluation of the Indigenous Advancement Strategy.

• $10.0 million over three years from 2017-18 to establish an Indigenous Research Fund that will add to the Indigenous policy evidence base.

• $2.9 million over four years from 2017-18 for the Productivity Commission to enhance its role in Indigenous policy evaluation and to expand the Commission to include an additional Commissioner with relevant experience in Indigenous policy.

While the government will continue to sell its budget, time will only tell its true effect on Indigenous Australians.

Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) Chief Executive Alison Verhoeven.

Download Press Release AHHA Health Budget 2017

‘Health Minister Greg Hunt has placed substantial trust through formal compacts with five professional groups – the Australian Medical Association, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, the Pharmacy Guild, Medicines Australia and the Generic and Biosimilar Medicines Association – in a budget which partly overturns horror budgets of the past.

‘It is now up to these groups and the Minister to ensure that this trust, and the funds being directed towards their interests, are well-invested for a healthy Australia.

‘There is a very real risk that tonight’s Budget will reward an increased volume of services and products, rather than incentivising a shift to greater value-based care and better health outcomes, particularly for the most vulnerable members of our community.

‘We commend the Minister’s pursuit of a more strategic approach to health policy, but the four pillars must be expanded to include primary care, aged care, Indigenous health, and better health outcomes.

‘The Minister’s three waves of reform are a guide for the remaining years of this Government’s term, but it is most disappointing that hospitals, primary care, prevention and Indigenous health are in the last wave of priorities.

‘The reform agenda needed across these areas is substantial, and won’t be put to bed solely by the formation of compacts with doctors and pharmacy industry groups.

Medicare

‘The progressive lifting of the freeze on Medicare payments for GP and specialist consultations and procedures may assist in shoring up Medicare, but risks continuing to drive volume in use of health services at the expense of value.

‘We hope that doctors – and particularly specialists – will play their side of their bargain and commit to bulk-billing for the many services which currently have large out-of-pocket costs associated with them,’ says Ms Verhoeven.

‘Higher out-of-pocket costs lead to less use of primary health care by people who cannot afford any kind of co-payment, which in turn leads to increased public hospital attendances and higher health costs down the track.

‘The Minister has proposed the Medicare Guarantee Fund as a measure to provide certainty for health funding, but it appears to be an exercise in compartmentalising health funding which could lead to longer term jeopardy should the coffers not be full enough.

Primary care

‘AHHA welcomes the Commonwealth’s ongoing commitment to its previously announced Health Care Homes trial as the beginning of a much-needed reform journey for primary health care in Australia. The funding for pharmacists to play a role in the trial is welcomed – Health Care Homes must be more than just a new way to fund care, and must focus on the most efficient and effective ways to provide care to people with high burdens of disease.

‘The development of a national minimum data set for primary care was flagged last year by the Primary Health Care Advisory Group as critical infrastructure for Health Care Homes, but there appears to be limited action. Data provision should be a trade-off with doctors for the Medicare rebate thaw.

‘Moving to an opt-out mechanism for the My Health Record, and ensuring substantial investment for this is commendable.

Hospitals

‘While growth funding for public hospitals is settled until 2021 with just over $2 billion in additional funding, there remains considerable uncertainty over post-2020 hospital funding and the method of indexation for future years. Hospital funding requires a sustainable, long-term solution that is part of an overall strategy to shift from volume to value-based care, and that leverages the investments being made in primary care and in Primary Health Networks.

Preventive health

‘It is disappointing that the Prime Minister’s interest in preventive health, announced in a National Press Club speech earlier this year, has not been a greater focus of this budget. Preventive health requires long-term national leadership and sustained investment to reduce illness, prevent disease and promote wellness. This in turn reduces individual, intergenerational and health system burden, improves health system resource use and boosts productivity through greater economic participation and productivity. Australia spends less on public health and prevention than most other OECD countries.

‘It is time to make prevention a more prominent part of the Commonwealth’s health agenda, and acknowledge that more is needed than just spending on sports and exercise programs —you can’t have a healthy economy or healthy budgets if you don’t support a healthy population.

Medicines

‘AHHA supports the Commonwealth’s move to encourage doctors and patients to choose generic medications when appropriate over the more expensive brand name drugs. There must be a firm commitment to put savings from the shift to generic medicines back into the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Private health insurance

‘AHHA is disappointed by the lack of progress in reforming private health insurance as part of tonight’s Federal Budget. This is a major let-down for policy holders who have been hit with substantial rises in health insurance premiums – and who remain very concerned about the value and transparency of their policies.

Oral health

‘Tonight’s Budget was a lost opportunity for greater equity in dental care by not restoring funding previously agreed to under the National Partnership Agreement for public dental services to adults. Last December the Commonwealth provided less than a fortnight’s notice to the states and territories of a significant cut to public dental funding—from $155 million in calendar year 2016 down to $128 million in calendar year 2017. The real pain is being felt by vulnerable population groups unable to afford private dental care.

Mental health

‘AHHA welcomes the $80 million investment for community psychosocial services for people who do not qualify for the National Disability Insurance Scheme.  We note this is contingent on matched commitments from the states and territories.

‘Investment in mental health services for veterans is also welcome – although we note that much of the $350 million allocated is for improvements to IT systems for claims processing, rather than for direct service provision.

Download press release Mental Health Budget 2017

Download Press Release Lifeline health Budget2017

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health

‘We welcome the commitment of $7.6 million over 4 years for a National Partnership Agreement on Rheumatic Fever Strategy.

‘It is unacceptable that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples continue to have poorer health and a much lower life expectancy than the general population, and that this Budget has overlooked that massive inequity. COAG’s recent re‑commitment to prioritising improving outcomes for Australia’s First Peoples should have been supported by appropriate funding and support for locally developed responses.

‘A commitment should have been made to appropriately fund the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023 and its Implementation Plan.

Health sector feels the warmth in Budget 2017, but rural health still needs some extra layers

The Rural Doctors Association of Australia (RDAA) has welcomed key elements of tonight’s Federal Budget, saying it shows recognition by the Federal Government of key concerns of RDAA and other medical groups, as well as recognition of the importance of the primary health sector in keeping Australians healthy and out of hospital.

“Overall, and certainly compared with previous federal budgets, this is a good budget for the health sector” RDAA President, Dr Ewen McPhee, said.

“Having said that, more work is required to fully address rural health issues, and we look forward to working with the Government to achieve this.

“We strongly welcome the Government’s decision to lift the indexation freeze onMedicare patient rebates, commencing with bulkbilled incentives for GP consultations from 1 July this year; standard GP consultations and other specialist attendances from 1 July 2018; specialist procedures and allied health from 1 July 2019; and targeted diagnostic imaging services from 1 July 2020.

“We would have preferred the freeze to be lifted in full immediately, but we accept the approach of the Government in lifting it incremently over forthcoming years.

“The lifting of the freeze on bulkbilled incentives for GP consultations will particularly benefit many rural and remote patients who rely strongly on bulkbilled consultations to afford their medical care.

“We are also particularly pleased that the Government has listened closely to RDAA and opted not to include the Indigenous Health Incentive and Procedural GP Practice Incentive as part of the Practice Incentives Program (PIP) Quality Improvement Incentive measure.

“This will mean that only general practices that are actively providing Indigenous healthcare and/or procedural GP services to their communities will continue to have access to the important funding support provided under these specific areas of the PIP.

“We also welcome some added support for the Health Care Homes initiative, through delaying the introduction of the initiative until 1 October 2017 for a first tranche of practices and until 1 December 2017 for a second tranche. A general practice research pilot will also support practices to provide continuity of care for their patients across the health system. It is also good to see funding support for community pharmacies to participate in the Health Care Homes initiative.

“We believe, however, that additional funding support for practices will be required to ensure the Health Care Homes initiative is fully successful.

“We welcome acknowledgement by the Federal Health Minister, Greg Hunt MP, that as part of a forthcoming second wave of the Government’s National Health Plan, there will be (amongst other things) a focus on addressing health workforce maldistribution between urban and rural areas.

“As part of this focus, and in line with a major initial focus of the National Rural Health Commissioner role (the legislation for which is anticipated to soon be passed by the Senate), we will be keen to see significant funding committed in future federal budgets to the development and rollout of the Government’s promised National Rural Generalist Program.

“This Program will be essential in delivering to rural and remote Australia the next generation of doctors with advanced medical skills — including in obstetrics, anaesthetics, general surgery, emergency medicine, advanced mental healthcare and Indigenous healthcare.

“We welcome funding already announced by the Government that will ensure rural and remote patients benefit from increased access to psychology services via Medicare funded video consults with distant psychologists.

“Additionally, we welcome significant additional funding in the areas of both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, and mental health.

“It was great to see Minister Hunt attend tonight’s Health Budget lockup to address health sector stakeholders — it underlines the consultative approach that he, along with the Federal Assistant Minister for Health, Dr David Gillespie MP, and the Federal Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health, Ken Wyatt AM MP, have been adopting in developing an holistic plan to take healthcare in Australia into the future.

“Rebalancing the distribution of doctors and other health professionals between urban and rural Australia will continue to be a key challenge, and we look forward to working with the Government to deliver a vibrant and sustainable rural health workforce for the years to come.”

 

NACCHO Aboriginal Health #Budget2017 : Indigenous leaders focus on health funding in May 2017 budget

The Close the Gap campaign priorities are not new. Governments know these priorities well. Yet the health gap remains a national tragedy. Indigenous people have a life expectancy of at least 10 years less than their non-Indigenous peers.

A nation as wealthy as ours should fund the critical health care of less than 3 per cent of its entire population. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health is a national priority, and we are repeatedly told it has bi-partisan support.

We need to listen to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and involve them in developing solutions. We need to employ Indigenous people to deliver services in their own communities.”

Patricia Turner CEO of National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation pictured above at last years Redfern Statement with Dr Jackie Huggins Co-Chair of the Close the Gap Campaign

Download the Campaign’s 2017 Budget Position paper list of nine priorities

2017 CTG Campaign Federal Budget Position Paper

The Close the Gap campaign has a close eye on the Federal Government’s commitment to Indigenous health in its May 2017 budget.

The Campaign’s 2017 Budget Position paper lists nine priorities that will help close the gap in health inequality for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

The Close the Gap campaign urged the Federal Government to commit to adequately funding the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023 and its subsequent Implementation Plan.

“The Implementation Plan has targeted activities that require adequate resourcing,” said Dr Jackie Huggins, Co-Chair of the Close the Gap Campaign and Co-Chair for the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples.

Example Recommendation 4

Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHS) are supported to provide high-quality, comprehensive and accountable services that are locally responsive to identified Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health needs by:

a. Providing sufficient funding to identify and fill the primary health care service gaps; and

b. Systematic assessment of health outcomes/needs, workforce capability and service capacity undertaken to inform the development of the core services model, future workforce requirements and investment and capacity building priorities

c. Ensure Primary Health Networks are directed to support and partner with ACCHS as the preferred providers of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health services.

The ACCHS sector provides inherent advantages for closing the gap. Firstly, its service model is the provision of comprehensive primary health care.

This model of care is needed because of the higher levels and earlier age onset of illness, the much greater levels of comorbidity in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people – and the need to address the fundamental determinants of health if the gap is to be closed.

ACCHS were established because of the inability of mainstream services to deliver for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and have a critical role to play in closing the Gap.

The ACCHS sector is a major employer of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people at all levels. In many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, the ACCHS operates as the primary employer. These are real and essential, skilled jobs. A long-term plan for building the capabilities of ACCHS is overdue.

The Campaign calls on Government to provide greater surety of funding to enable ACCHS to enhance their capacity to undertake long-term service and workforce planning – particularly in relation to primary health care service gaps. We know that sustainable, long-term services deliver the best health outcomes.

We further propose that ACCHS be treated as preferred providers for health services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people unless it can be shown that alternative arrangements can produce better outcomes in terms of quality of care and access to services. We believe the evidence shows this and we support government using an objective, informed evidence base to guide future decisions

Press Release Cont:

Ms Donna Murray, CEO of Indigenous Allied Health Australia, urged the Government to invest for the long-term by supporting the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce.

“Dedicated funding for allied health, medicine, nursing, midwifery and health workers as well as for the national Indigenous organisations who are involved in workforce development will contribute significantly to improving the health and wellbeing outcomes for our people and communities.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are 3 per cent of our population but less than 1 per cent of our health workforce,” Ms Murray said.

The Close the Gap campaign called on the Government to ensure that funding for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) recognises the estimated 45 per cent of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability.

“The NDIS and the Indigenous Advancement Strategy should prioritise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability,” said Damian Griffis, CEO of the First Peoples Disability Network.

The Close the Gap campaign remains optimistic that health equality is possible if governments commit to long-term investment and to  working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

7 BETTER WAYS TO SPEND $7 BILLION – INDIGENOUS HEALTH

The Australian Healthcare Reform Alliance (AHCRA) today called on the Government to re-direct funding in the upcoming Budget from the $7 billion private health insurance (PHI) rebate to improve the health and well-being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.

AHCRA is a coalition of peak health organisations working together to create a better and fairer health system for Australia’s future.

“Indigenous health is the number one health issue facing Australia. It is unacceptable that in Australia today Indigenous people have significantly poorer health and a much lower life expectancy than the non-Indigenous population,” Jennifer Doggett, ACHRA Chair, said today.

“It is also unacceptable that despite their much greater health need, Indigenous Australians receive much less benefit from the $7b PHI rebate than non-Indigenous Australians (due to their much lower levels of PHI membership).

“Re-directing funding from the PHI rebate to Indigenous health services would help address this imbalance in funding. This should be used to support a comprehensive population-wide approach that incorporates the social determinants of health and empowers people to take control of their own lives and improve their health through culturally appropriate mechanisms.

“At the centre of efforts to close the health and life expectancy gap are community- controlled health services which provide person-centred and to culturally relevant care, including both a biomedical and preventative health focus. These services, and their representative body NACCHO, require more consistent and assured long-term funding to enable effective planning and capacity development that will deliver the best possible outcomes.

“Therefore, AHCRA supports the allocation of funding from the PHI rebate to achieve the following:

Allocate secure long-term funding to progress the strategies and actions identified in the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan Implementation Plan.

Provide secure, long-term funding for the Rural Health Outreach Fund and Medical Outreach Indigenous Chronic Disease Program.

Allocate sufficient and secure long-term funding to the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector to support the sector’s continued provision of Indigenous-led, culturally sensitive healthcare.

Build and support the capacity of Indigenous health leaders by committing secure long-term funding to the Indigenous National Health Leadership Forum.

 Reinstate funding for a clearinghouse modelled on the previous Closing the Gap clearinghouse, as recommended in the latest draft of the Fifth National Mental Health Plan.

“The health and well-being of Indigenous Australians should be a higher priority for funding than PHI industry subsidies. AHCRA calls on the Federal Government to re-direct funding from the $7b rebate in order to close the health and life expectancy gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians,” Ms Doggett said.