NACCHO Aboriginal Health Promotion  “Live Healthy. Live Long. Live Strong.” @KenWyattMP Officially launches the world’s first, Indigenous exclusively health-focussed television network – Aboriginal Health Television (AHTV) @TonicHealth_AU

” Engaging with our people in a culturally sensitive way is vital and SWAMS is always looking for new and innovative ways to do this on a large TV screen in our waiting rooms.

 After all we service more than 10,000 clients and average 50 new patients every month. Delivering important national and local health campaign messages and promotions via a digital TV channel saves lives. 

We can then follow up the patients with advice, clinical options and promotional material. We know that giving patients advice in their own language assists with their understanding of their health conditions and what services they can request from our clinical team.

Aboriginal Community Control even in health messaging is important and we will certainly make use of the offer to create our own unique promotional content.

I welcome the assistance provided from NACCHO to the Aboriginal Health Television Network about our needs, expectations and hopes that this service will help thousands of patients obtain the care they deserve in our health settings and WA hospitals.

South West Aboriginal Medical Service (SWAMS) CEO Lesley Nelson ( and NACCHO board member ) is proud that SWAMS is one of the first locations in Australia to have AHTV. See Full Speech Part 2 below 

  • Community Member Greg Vinmar
  • Federal Member for Forrest and Chief Government Whip, the Hon. Nola Marino MP
  • NACCHO Board Member for WA and South West Aboriginal Medical Service CEO, Lesley Nelson
  • Tonic Health Media Executive Director, Dr Norman Swan
  • Federal Minister for Indigenous Health, the Hon. Ken Wyatt AM, MP   (Front)

Media Coverage view HERE

Read previous NACCHO articles about Aboriginal Health Television (AHTV)

View Aboriginal Health Television (AHTV) website

www.aboriginalhealthtv.com.au

“The new network is an exciting step forward, built on local engagement, including local production of health and wellbeing stories, to reach the hearts and minds of our people and our families,

AHTV is a truly unique, ground-up opportunity to connect at the point of care and build stronger, healthier communities,”

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM spoke about the importance of AHTV from the South West Aboriginal Medical Service (SWAMS) in Bunbury, Western Australia, which is one of first 50 initial locations to install AHTV. It is expected the network will be broadcasting in 100 locations by May 2019. See full press release Part 3

WATCH AHTV HERE

Today the world’s first, Indigenous exclusively health-focussed television network – Aboriginal Health Television (AHTV) was officially launched by the Federal Minister for Indigenous Health, the Hon. Ken Wyatt AM, MP.

The Federal Government in July 2018 committed $3.4 million over three years to develop the targeted, culturally relevant AHTV network, which is expected to reach a First Nations’ audience of over 1.2 million people a month.

“The fundamental idea behind AHTV is to provide engaging, appropriate and evidence informed health content to Aboriginal people while they are waiting to see their health professional,” says Dr Norman Swan, Co-Founder of Tonic Health Media who is developing this not for profit network.

“We have evidence that this period in the waiting area is a time when people are most open to information which can improve their health and offer relevant questions to ask their health professional when they see them in the next few minutes.

“Our aim is to offer AHTV as a free, fully maintained service to all Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations (ACCHOs) across Australia – around 300 locations. And it is already being rolled out, with SWAMS as one of our first. We know that our targeted messaging can make a big difference.

There’s nothing like knowledge to give people control over their decisions.

“AHTV, guided by its Advisory Group of highly respected Aboriginal health leaders and researchers, will continue to work closely with Aboriginal Peak Health Bodies and ACCHOs, to develop and deliver culturally relevant health messaging and lifestyle content.

“We are also partnering with third party content producers who specialise in Indigenous content to acquire and produce culturally relevant content,” Dr Norman Swan said.

Tonic Managing Director Dr. Matthew Cullen says the partnership is an important step towards Tonic’s goal of improving health outcomes for all Australians.

“AHTV provides a unique opportunity to communicate with Aboriginal audiences at the point of care when patients, their families, carers and health service providers are strongly focussed on health and wellbeing,” said Dr Cullen.

Aboriginal Health TV Advisory Group member, Associate Professor Chris Lawrence, says the delivery of a culturally relevant TV network that connects with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities will improve health outcomes.

“Australia has always been a world leader in health promotion. AHTV signals a new era in how health promotion messages are told and delivered to one of the world’s most vulnerable and at-risk populations.

“AHTV builds on this using digital technology to help close the gap, and improve the health and wellbeing of Indigenous Australians,” said Associate Professor Lawrence.

These sentiments were echoed by South West Aboriginal Medical Service (SWAMS) CEO Lesley Nelson who is proud that SWAMS is one of the first locations in Australia to have AHTV.

“Health promotion is a huge part of what we do at SWAMS, and we welcome any opportunity to communicate these important health messages to our clients,” Ms Nelson said.

“The fact that the content has been tailored to suit our local Aboriginal community means that our clients will benefit from health information that is relevant, culturally sensitive and meaningful to them. I strongly encourage Aboriginal Medical Services nation-wide to jump on board this fantastic initiative,” Ms Nelson added.

Jake Thomson, a proud Aboriginal man is playing a lead role in bringing AHTV to Indigenous communities. Belonging to the Wiradjuri Nation and growing up in Western Sydney, Jake is the Community Relationships Manager for AHTV.

“AHTV not only offers culturally relevant content, but it gives a voice to every community. By having the information they need, it will enable our people to consciously make the right choices, which in turn will lead to better health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people,” Jake said.

And that’s exactly the aim of AHTV. Its tagline “Live Healthy. Live Long. Live Strong.” is the message they are here to deliver.

Part 2 : South West Aboriginal Medical Service (SWAMS) CEO Lesley Nelson ( and NACCHO board member ) is proud that SWAMS is one of the first locations in Australia to have AHTV.

It is always a pleasure to welcome the Indigenous Health Minister to our South West Aboriginal Medical Service and staff from the Aboriginal Health Television Network. (Acknowledge any other VIPs in the audience).

Minister, this world first Aboriginal Health Television Network will assist our 70 staff who are based in six clinics to discuss with our patients’ topics like diabetes, dental health, sexual health, tobacco cessation, men’s and women’s health and heart health.

Engaging with our people in a culturally sensitive way is vital and SWAMS is always looking for new and innovative ways to do this on a large TV screen in our waiting rooms. After all we service more than 10,000 clients and average 50 new patients every month.

Delivering important national and local health campaign messages and promotions via a digital TV channel saves lives. We can then follow up the patients with advice, clinical options and promotional material.

We know that giving patients advice in their own language assists with their understanding of their health conditions and what services they can request from our clinical team.

Aboriginal Community Control even in health messaging is important and we will certainly make use of the offer to create our own unique promotional content. I welcome the assistance provided from NACCHO to the Aboriginal Health Television Network about our needs, expectations and hopes that this service will help thousands of patients obtain the care they deserve in our health settings and WA hospitals.

On behalf of the South West Aboriginal Medical Service and NACCHO I welcome the launch of this new world first service in our community by the Minister.

Part 3 NEW TV NETWORK CHANNELS GOOD HEALTH TO FIRST AUSTRALIANS

A new digital television network now rolling out across the nation aims to help Close the Gap in health equality by revolutionising the way hundreds of thousands of First Australians receive health information.

Today’s official launch of the Aboriginal Health TV (AHTV) network at the South West Aboriginal Medical Service in Bunbury, Western Australia, is backed by a three-year, $3.4 million commitment by the Liberal National Government, to ensure First Australian patients can access relevant health stories and advice at local treatment centres.

“The new network is an exciting step forward, built on local engagement, including local production of health and wellbeing stories, to reach the hearts and minds of our people and our families,” said Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM.

“AHTV is a truly unique, ground-up opportunity to connect at the point of care and build stronger, healthier communities.”

The TV programs will be broadcast at Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services around Australia.

Tonic Health Media (THM), the nation’s largest health and wellbeing network, is producing and commissioning targeted video content for AHTV, which is expected to be viewed by up to 1.2 million patients each month.

The programs on the new digital network feature issues including smoking, eye and ear checks, skin conditions, nutrition, immunisation, sexual health, diabetes, drug and alcohol treatment services and encourage the uptake of 715 health checks.

To ensure these important health messages reach as many people as possible content will also be repackaged for social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

“South West Aboriginal Medical Service has been chosen as one of AHTV’s initial trial sites,” said Member for Forrest Nola Marino.

“This will add to the fantastic range of services that SWAMS already provides for the local community here in the South West.”

AHTV will be installed and maintained at no cost to local Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services and plans to be self-sufficient within three years.

“It is expected the network will be broadcasting in 100 locations by May 2019, with the overall rollout planned for approximately 300 centres nationwide,” Minister Wyatt said.

“AHTV programming will also be available on Tonic Health Media’s existing platform which broadcasts in mainstream health services, meaning these important messages have the potential to reach the 50 per cent of our people who use non-Aboriginal medical services.”

Content licensing partnership agreements have been signed with ABC Indigenous and NITV and negotiations are underway with third-party production groups specialising in local Indigenous content.

The Liberal National Government’s AHTV commitment is part of the $3.9 billion dedicated to improving the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people announced in the 2018-19 Budget.

For more details on the new network, see www.aboriginalhealthtv.com.au

NACCHO Aboriginal Health #SocialDeterminants #refreshtheCTGRefresh @KenWyattMP announces 4 year$18.6 million evaluation into Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary healthcare : Designed for faster progress in #Closingthegap in health equality.

” A top priority has been placed on ensuring local communities that are involved in receiving and providing primary healthcare have a strong voice throughout the process,’

Federal Minister for Indigenous Health Ken Wyatt

From Dr Evelyn Lewin RACGP NewsGP 

A four-year $18.6 million evaluation into Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary healthcare aims to produce sustained improvements in service delivery and health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

A main focus of the Federal Government program will be considering how Commonwealth investment in the Indigenous Australians’ Health Programme (IAHP) links with the broader health system.

This is designed to help improve healthcare access and drive faster progress in closing the gap in health equality.

With $3.6 billion being invested in the IAHP across four years (2018–19 to 2021–22), this evaluation will help maximise the value and impact of health funding and guide program design.

The evaluation also aims to learn how well the primary healthcare system is working for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, demonstrate the difference the IAHP makes, and inform efforts to accelerate improvement in health and wellbeing for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The evaluation will establish up to 20 location-based studies to collect information from various Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health services around the country.

‘The project is another important step in assessing the impact on First Peoples’ health from the provision of effective, high-quality, culturally appropriate healthcare,’ Minister Wyatt said.

According to a report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW), The health and welfare of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples: 2015, 3% of the Australian population (just over 760,000 people) are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The report states that one in four (24%) of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples aged 15 and over assessed their health as ‘fair or poor’ in 2012–13, making them 2.1 times as likely as non-Indigenous Australians to report such results.

The AIHW report also noted that 39% of the gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and non-Indigenous Australians health outcomes can be explained by social determinants

NACCHO Aboriginal Health #NACCHOagm2018 Report 4 of 5 : Minister @KenWyattMP full text keynote speech launching @AIHW  report report solely focusing on the health and wellbeing of young Indigenous people aged 10–24

” Culturally-appropriate care and safety has a vast role to play in improving the health and wellbeing of our people. In this respect, I want to make special mention of the proven record of the Aboriginal Community Health Organisations in increasing the health and wellbeing of First Peoples by delivering culturally competent care.

I’m pleased to be here at this conference, which aims to make a difference with a simple but sentinel theme of investing in what works, surely a guiding principle for all that we do

Providing strong pointers for this is a new youth report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

Equipped with this information, we can connect the dots – what is working well and where we need to focus our energies, invest our expertise, so our young people can reap the benefits of better health and wellbeing “

Minister Ken Wyatt launching AIHW Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Adolescent and Youth Health and Wellbeing 2018 report at NACCHO Conference 31 October attended by over 500 ACCHO delegates 

In Noongar language I say, kaya wangju. I acknowledge the traditional custodians on the land on which we meet and join together in acknowledging this fellowship and sharing of ideas.

I acknowledge Elders, past and present and I also want to acknowledge some individuals who have done an outstanding job in the work that you all do and I thank you for the impact that you have at the local community level: John Singer, chair of NACCHO; Pat Turner AM, CEO of NACCHO; Donnella Mills; Dr Dawn Casey; Dr Fadwa Al-Yaman; Professor Sandra Eades; Donna Ah Chee; LaVerne Bellear; Chris Bin Kali; Adrian Carson – and I’m sorry to hear that Adrian’s not with us because of a family loss – Kieran Chilcott; Raylene Foster; Rod Jackson; Vicki Holmes; John Mitchell; Scott Monaghan; Lesley Nelson; Julie Tongs; Olga Havnen.

All of you I have known over a long period of time and the work and commitment that you have made to the pathways that you have taken has been outstanding. I’d also like to acknowledge Dr Tim Howle, Prajali Dangol, and Helen Johnstone, the report authors.

I’m pleased to be here at this conference, which aims to make a difference with a simple but sentinel theme of investing in what works, surely a guiding principle for all that we do.

Providing strong pointers for this is a new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

I understand this is the very first study by the Institute that focuses solely on First Nations people aged 10 to 24.

Download a copy of report aihw-ihw-198

As such, it is a critical document.

Firstly because it puts at your fingertips high quality, targeted research about our young people.

Secondly, it gives us a clear understanding of where they are doing well, but also the challenges young people still face.

And thirdly, equipped with this information, we can connect the dots – what is working well and where we need to focus our energies, invest our expertise, so our young people can reap the benefits of better health and wellbeing.

I’m always passionate about all young people having the best start in life and marshalling the human resources necessary so that this care extends right through to early adulthood, laying strong foundations for the rest of their lives.

I want to run through some of the key findings of this report and then talk about Closing the Gap Refresh in our Government’s commitment to and support for our young people. I’m pleased some real positives have been identified.

The report found a majority of the 242,000 young First Australians, or 63 per cent, assessed their health as either excellent or very good. Further, 61 per cent of young people had a connection to country and 69 per cent were involved in cultural events in the previous 12 months.

As the oldest continuous culture, we know that maintaining our connections to country and our cultural traditions is a key to our health and wellbeing. Education is another important factor in our ability to live well and reach our full potential.

In the 20 to 24 age group, the number of young people who have completed Year 12 or the equivalent has increased from 47 per cent in 2006 to 65 per cent in 2016. Smoking rates have declined and there is also an increase in the number of young people who have never taken up smoking in the first place.

Eighty-three per cent of respondents reported they had access to a GP and between 2010 and 2016, the proportion of young people aged 15 to 24 who had an Indigenous health check – that’s the MBS Item 715 – almost quadrupled from 6 per cent to 22 per cent. These are some of the encouraging results, but challenges remain.

In 2016, 42 per cent of young First Australians were not engaged in education, employment or training. Although there has been a decline in smoking rates for young people, one in three aged between 15 and 24 was still smoking daily.

Sixty-two per cent of our young people aged 10 to 24 had a longer-term health challenge such as respiratory disease, eye and vision problems, or mental health conditions. These statistics inform us, and, critically in the work we are doing, point to an evidence-based pathway forward.

I know you’ll be interested to know that the Prime Minister has now confirmed the refresh of the Closing the Gap will be considered at the next COAG meeting on 12 December.

Closing the Gap requires us to raise our sights from a focus on problems and deficits to actively supporting the full participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the social and economic life of the nation. There is a need to focus on the long term and on future generations to strengthen prevention and early intervention initiatives that help build strong families and communities.

The Government has hosted 29 national roundtables from November 2017 to August 2018 in each state and territory capital city and major regional centres. We’ve also met with a significant number of stakeholders. In total, we reached more than 1200 participants. More than 170 written submissions were also received on the public discussion paper about Refresh.

The Refresh is expected to settle on 10 to 15 targets. These targets are aimed at building our strengths and successes to support intergenerational change. Existing targets on life expectancy, Year 12 enrolment, and early childhood will continue.

Action plans will set out the concrete steps each government will take to achieve the new Closing the Gap targets, and we have to hold state and territory governments to account. The plans to be developed in the first half of 2019 will be informed by the lived experience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, community leaders, service providers, and peak bodies.

Dedicated and continuous dialogue along with meaningful engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities is fundamental to ensuring the refreshed agenda and revised targets meets the expectations and aspirations of First Australians and the nation as a whole.

These actions will be backed by positive policy changes in both prevention and treatment, such as the introduction from tomorrow of the new Medicare Benefits Schedule item to fund delivery of remote kidney dialysis by nurses and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers and practitioners, further improving access to dialysis on country.

The COAG health ministers in Alice Springs just recently on 3 August met with Indigenous leaders and asked for their views on a range of issues, and all of the leaders in attendance had an incredible impact on each state and territory Minister.

I know that because I attended the Ministers’ dinner later in which the discussion came to the very issues that were raised by our leaders from all over the nation.

And COAG, the next morning, made the decision that Aboriginal health will be a priority on the COAG agenda for all future meetings, and that whoever the Minister for Indigenous Health is will be ex officio on the Health Ministers’ Forum to inform and to engage in a dialogue around the key issues that were identified, not only by the leadership, but by the evidence of the work that we do; and there are six national priorities now that COAG will turn its mind to, the COAG health ministers.

Over the next decade, the Australian Government has committed $10 billion to improve the health of First Australians.

This is a substantial sum of money, but we are only going to achieve better health and wellbeing outcomes if we work and walk together. We have to build mutual trust and respect in all that we do, and I include in this every state and territory system.

We have to increase cultural capability and responsibility in all health settings and services. We must support and encourage the development of local and family-based approaches for health. As I’ve said before, we need every one of our men and women to take the lead and perpetuate our proud traditions that have kept us healthy for 65,000 years.

Culturally-appropriate care and safety has a vast role to play in improving the health and wellbeing of our people. In this respect, I want to make special mention of the proven record of the Aboriginal Community Health Organisations in increasing the health and wellbeing of First Peoples by delivering culturally competent care.

And while they’re widely canvassing the importance of supporting the growth and potential of children and young adults, I would like to make special mention of the support required for our senior people as well, our Elders.

We must ensure that all older First Nations Australians who are eligible for age or disability support can access the care they deserve; either through the My Aged Care System or the National Disability Insurance Scheme. With a holistic grassroots approach of the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations, I believe ACCHOs should work to ensure that our older, Indigenous leaders receive assessments and support options that are available.

In August, as I indicated, I met with Indigenous leaders as part of the COAG Health Council Roundtable. Coming out of this was not only a resolution to make First Peoples health a continuing council priority, but a commitment to develop a National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health and Medical Workforce plan. I see this as being more about Aboriginal doctors, nurses and health workers working on country and in our towns and cities. It’s also about building capacity of health professionals across the entire health system to provide culturally safe services.

I was talking with Shelly Strickland some time ago, and she asked me a couple of questions, and I said to her: watch the movie Hidden Figures.

And at the time, I know she left me thinking what the hell is he talking about and why would you recommend a movie? When you look at that movie, it was about Afro-American women who put man on the moon.

The movie is based on the work of the women who gave the scientists the solutions to putting a rocket into space, landing man on the moon, and bringing them back; it was an untold story. And there are multiple layers when you look at that movie of overt racism. They were not allowed to use the same toilets as their white counterparts, they had to run two car parks away in any condition to use a toilet.

When something went wrong, people looked at them and saw them as the fault. But what they did very superbly was take their knowledge, apply science, apply the thinking that was needed, and demonstrated mathematically that man could land on the moon.

Not one NASA, non-Indigenous or non-American Afro-American had reached that solution. Those four women – I think it was four – provided the solution, but their story was never told. And they were the true leaders of space adventure and discovery. If they had not done the thinking and the tackling of the issue, then the solution would never have been reached. There are parallels in Aboriginal health.

We think of GP super clinics – they were modelled on our AMSs, about a holistic approach. There are other elements of what you do, and what we as a people do, that health systems have taken note of. But what we have to be better at is sharing where we have leadership.

I look at the work that Donna Murray is doing with Allied Health Staff – the outcomes that she achieves, they are stunning.

The work which she puts into helping make the journey a positive journey achieves outcomes that are disproportional to the work that we do as a government in many other areas in mainstream.

And we do lead – and if you haven’t seen that movie, you have to look at it and think of the parallels that our people went through. But, I think the other most salient point is, is that it was the Afro-American women who were the backbone of the space and science discovery program of America.

And I would like to acknowledge our women as well. I think the NAIDOC theme is one of the best themes I have seen in a long time; and I’ve been around a while. And I see it in health where our women play a very pivotal role and are the backbone of the frontline services that are delivered. Men always gravitate to the top; we tend to do that.

But, I do see that the actual hands-on work is done by our women, and so I thank you for that, because the progress we’ve made is because of the way in which you, like those Afro-American women, have helped shape the destiny and future. And I think of some of the people that I’ve known over the years who would be in a similar category.

And certainly, I’ll single out one because she was a great friend and taught me a lot, was Naomi Myers, whose leadership and dedication was parallel to that of the women in that movie Hidden Figures.

While the Medical Health Workforce Plan will be positive for Aboriginal Torres Islander jobs across Australia, it has particular potential for tackling chronic disease and improving the lives of our people in remote communities.

We are all well aware of the importance of health and wellbeing of our young children. There is ample evidence that investment in child and family health supports the health and development of children in the first five years; setting strong foundations for life.

And Kerry Arabena’s work certainly epitomises that along with many others. Good health and learning behaviours set in the early years continue throughout a young person’s life. Young people are more likely to remain engaged in education and make healthy choices when they’re happy, healthy and resilient, and supported by strong families and communities that have access to services and support their needs.

Connected Beginnings program is using a collective impact placed based approach to prepare children for the transition to school so they are able to learn and thrive. The program is providing children and their families with access to cohesive and coordinated support and services in their communities.

The Australian Nurse Family Partnership Program targets mothers from early pregnancy through to the child’s second birthday, and aims to improve pregnancy outcomes by helping women engage in good preventive health practices, supporting parents to improve their child’s health and development, and helping parents develop a vision for their own child’s future; including continuing education and work. Increasingly, research is also highlighting the long term value of investing in youth.

This investment benefits young people now as they become adults, and as they then have children of their own.

So I want to focus on some of the things that we are doing that is important, the take up of MBS 175, access to MBS items.

We’re improving the Practice Incentives Program, Indigenous Health Incentive which promotes best practice and culturally safe chronic disease care. We are reducing preventable chronic disease caused by poor nutrition through the EON Thriving Community programs in remote communities.

We’re tackling smoking rates through the Tackling Indigenous Smoking Program; and encouragingly, youth had the biggest drop. And we’re prioritising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health in the first round of funding under the Million Minds Research Mission.

More broadly, for our First Australians and the wider population, we are investing in services for the one in four who experience mental illness each year.

And this also includes through Minister Hunt funding to headspace Centres, Orygen, beyondblue’s new school-based initiative BU, Digital Mental Health child, and youth mental health research and working alongside Greg has been a tremendous opportunity, because I’ve been able to get into his ear about the need for him also to consider our people in key initiatives that he launches, and he’s been a great ally.

And our work on the 10-year National Action Plan for Children’s Health continues. I want to continue setting strong foundations for making sure our people have access to culturally safe and appropriate health services.

Let me also just go quickly to the report. I had a look at the report online, and I was impressed with the way in which the writers – and FAD were in AIHW and have pulled together this one and have taken elements out of the two major better health reports.

And it was great to see our profiling, in some cases being better, in some cases being challenging. But this is a good guide for all of us to use and I commend everybody who’s been involved, and it gives me great pleasure to launch the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Adolescent and Youth Health and Wellbeing 2018 report.

So, congratulations to all of those involved and congratulations to each and every one of you who have contributed to this report in the data that you provide, the work that you do but your commitment to our people. Thank you.

NACCHO Aboriginal Health #NACCHOagm2018 Report 1 of 5 : NACCHO welcomes the launch by @KenWyattMP of the first @AIHW report solely focusing on the health and wellbeing of young Indigenous people aged 10–24

 ” As the oldest continuous culture on Earth, we know that maintaining our connection to country and our cultural traditions is a key to our health and wellbeing.

The report also raises some of the challenges faced by young First Australians including 42 per cent who were not engaged in education, employment or training.

Although there has been a decline in smoking rates for young First Australians, one in three people aged between 15–24 was still a daily smoker in 2014-15 and 62 per cent of those aged 10-24 had longer-term health challenges such as respiratory or vision problems or mental health conditions.

Clearly there is much work to do to strengthen prevention and early intervention initiatives that will help build strong families and communities.’

Minister Ken Wyatt Press Release See Part 3 Below : Noting we will publish the Ministers full launch speech later this week 

We thank both the Minister and the AIHW for choosing our sell out NACCHO Members’ Conference attended by over 500 members and stakeholders to launch the first AIHW report that solely focuses on the health and wellbeing of our young Indigenous people aged 10–24.

By providing insights into their health and wellbeing including areas where they are doing well and challenges they face, the report aims to contribute to better outcomes for Indigenous young people today, as they move into adulthood, and for future generations of Indigenous Australians.”

Mr John Singer, Chairperson and Donnella Mills Deputy Chair of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation last week welcomed the launching by Minister for Indigenous Ken Wyatt at NACCHO Members’ Conference and AGM , the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW’s) report Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Adolescent and Youth Health and Wellbeing 2018

Introduction

  1. Young Indigenous population
  2. Wellbeing of young Indigenous people
  3. Health of young Indigenous people
  4. Social and economic determinants
  5. Health risk factors
  6. Health services
  7. How do young Indigenous people compare

Download Copy of Report 

aihw-ihw-198

 ” NACCHO Youth Health Conference – future ACCHO “ leaders of tomorrow “

 ” Last Tuesday I welcomed seventy-five young people from around Australia to our inaugural NACCHO Youth Health Conference: Future leaders of Tomorrow where they discussed their health and public policy issues affecting our youth. I was inspired by these future ACCHO “ leaders of tomorrow “ with their positive and innovative report back to the plenary session”

John Singer NACCHO Chair: Noting a full NACCHO Youth report will be published later this week 

Mr Singer observed that this snapshot-style report has been designed to provide an easy overview of the key issues, suitable for a wide audience including his 145 NACCHO members operating 302 urban, regional and remote ACCHO plus other policymakers, researchers and service providers.

Youth is a key transition period in a person’s life. It is a time when decisions are made about relationships, education and career paths, employment and finances. The social, economic, environmental and technological changes that have occurred in recent decades mean that young people now face issues that previous generations may not have experienced.

Young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people may face additional obstacles in making a successful transition to adulthood. The effect of inter-generational trauma, racism and prejudice, and socioeconomic disadvantage are all relevant in understanding the experiences of young Indigenous people today

The report provides data on 65 indicators. The indicators are grouped according to their focus on health and wellbeing outcomes, social determinants and risk factors or the use of health services.

The report brings together data from a variety of sources, and includes information on health outcomes, determinants and service use for Indigenous youth with data disaggregated by age group, sex, state and territory and remoteness areas.

Part 2 Key findings:

  • In 2016, there were around 242,000 Indigenous people aged 10–24 in Australia. About 1 in 20 young people in Australia was Indigenous.
  • In 2014–15, a majority of young Indigenous people aged 10–24 assessed their health as either ‘excellent’ or ‘very good’ (63%).
  • 61% of young Indigenous people aged 10 to 24 recognised their traditional homelands or traditional country, and 69% were involved in cultural events in the previous 12 months.
  • There was an increase in the proportion of young Indigenous people aged 20–24 who had Year 12 or equivalent attainment from 47% in 2006 to 65% in 2016.
  • Young Indigenous people aged 15–24 who smoked daily declined from 45% in 2002 to 31% in 2014–15. There was also an increase in young people who never smoked from 44% in 2002 to 56% in 2014–15.
  • The mortality rate for young Indigenous people has declined, from 70 per 100,000 in 2005 to 67 per 100,000 in 2015. There were an estimated 490 avoidable deaths for young Indigenous people aged 15–24, representing 83% of Indigenous deaths for this age group.
  • In 2012–13, most young Indigenous people aged 10–24 had access to a GP in their local area (83%).
  • Between 2010 and 2016, the proportion of young people aged 15–24 who had an Indigenous health check (MBS item 715) rose from 6% to 22%.

There remains key challenges to be addressed:

  • In 2016, 42% of young Indigenous people were not engaged in education, employment or training.
  • Although there has been a decline in smoking rates for young Indigenous people, 1 in 3 Indigenous youth aged 15–24 were still daily smokers in 2014–15.
  • 62% of young Indigenous people aged 10–24 had a long-term condition, most prevalent was respiratory disease (36%) and eye and vision problems (20%) and mental health conditions (10%).
  • In 2011, the leading contributors to the disease burden for Indigenous 10 to 24-year-olds were suicide and self-inflicted injuries (13%), anxiety disorders (8%), alcohol use disorders (7%) and road traffic accidents (6%).
  • In 2015-16, the leading causes of hospitalisations for young Indigenous people aged 10–24 were injury and poisoning (37 per 1,000) and mental and behavioural disorders (20 per 1,000).

Part 3 Minister Ken Wyatt Press Release

The health and wellbeing of First Australian teenagers and young adults is the focus of a unique new report released today.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Adolescent and Youth Health and Wellbeing 2018 report reveals specific, national data on 10-24 year olds for the first time.

The positive outcomes highlighted in this Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) research show where concerted and targeted efforts by First Nations families, communities, government and health care organisations are getting results.

Sixty-three per cent of First Australians aged 10–24 assessed their health as either ‘excellent’ or ‘very good’.

The number of First Australians aged 15-24 who smoked daily declined from 45 per cent in 2002 to 31 per cent in 2014-15. There was also an increase in young people who never smoked, up from 44 per cent in 2002 to 56 per cent in 2014 15.

In 2012-13, 83 per cent of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 10-24 had access to a GP in their local area.

Between 2010 and 2016, the proportion of young people aged 15–24 who had an Indigenous health check (MBS item 715) almost quadrupled, from 6 per cent to 22 per cent.

It is also pleasing to see 61 per cent of our young people reported having a connection to country and 69 per cent were involved in cultural events in the previous 12 months.

As the oldest continuous culture on Earth, we know that maintaining our connection to country and our cultural traditions is a key to our health and wellbeing.

The report also raises some of the challenges faced by young First Australians including 42 per cent who were not engaged in education, employment or training.

Although there has been a decline in smoking rates for young First Australians, one in three people aged between15–24 was still a daily smoker in 2014-15 and 62 per cent of those aged 10-24 had longer-term health challenges such as respiratory or vision problems or mental health conditions.

Clearly there is much work to do to strengthen prevention and early intervention initiatives that will help build strong families and communities.

While the health of babies and younger children creates a crucial foundation for healthier and longer lives, data like this is vital in ensuring a good start continues into adulthood.

It will inform the Closing the Gap refresh and help us to understand what is working well and where we need to focus our energies, so all young First Australians can reap the benefits of better health and wellbeing.

Our Government has committed to spending approximately $10 billion to improve First People’s health over the next decade.

I thank the AIHW and Professor Sandra Eades, Chair of the AIHW Expert Advisory Group and the team of experts for their work on this important and timely report.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Adolescent and Youth Health and Wellbeing 2018 can be found on the AIHW website.

 

NACCHO Aboriginal Health Workforce and Training News : Our peak bodies @KenWyattMP and @CPMC_Aust Building the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce and strengthening alliances to address the health priorities of Indigenous Australians.

 

” NACCHO stresses the importance of continuing to grow the depth and number of Indigenous people in the health sector.

Improving the health of our people can only occur through partnership, and integrating health care providers with community controlled services is the key.

Ms Patricia Turner, CEO of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO)

 “Background :  On 31 May 2017 the Australian Government joined with the Council of Presidents of Medical Colleges, the Australian Indigenous Doctor’s Association and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation as partners to improve the good health and wellbeing for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Focussing on Tier Three of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan, partners are working in collaboration to improve system performance by focussing on two key comprehensive areas for collective strategic action: increase the health workforce and embed cultural safety and competency in the system

Download a full copy of the signed agreement 

Signed Agreement

Australia’s peak bodies for Indigenous health and specialist medicine have reaffirmed their commitment to working with the Australian Government as partners in reducing the current gap in health outcomes and life expectancy between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous Australians under the Closing the Gap strategy.

Introducing the forum held on Wednesday 12th September at Parliament House, Minister Ken Wyatt AM, welcomed the opportunity to continue discussions under the National Partnership, highlighting the Australian Government’s commitment to Closing the Gap as the platform for improving the health and wellbeing for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The decision by Australian Health Ministers through the Council of Australian Governments Health Council to develop a National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workforce Plan by 2019 was welcomed by the collaborative partners.

Discussing the key areas of the partnership, cultural safety and access to services remain top priorities.

The Chair of the Council of Presidents of Medical Colleges (CPMC) Dr Philip Truskett AM reported that the key focus area of increasing the Indigenous specialist medical workforce by focussing on support, mentoring, role modelling was core business for Australia’s specialist Medical Colleges.

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM said the collaborative group was ideally placed to play an essential role in the COAG Health Council resolution to develop a National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health and Medical Workforce Plan – to ensure more Aboriginal doctors, nurses and health workers on country and in our towns and cities, local warriors for health among our families and communities.

Dr Kali Hayward, President Australian Indigenous Doctor’s Association (AIDA) reflected on building culturally appropriate health workforce and the need to discover champions in the system to support training.

Ms Janine Mohammed, CEO Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives (CATSINaM) highlighted the merit in greater coordination of services to deliver improvements in health outcomes.

Mr Karl Briscoe, CEO, National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers Association (NATSIHWA) highlighted the importance of building the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce and strengthening alliances to address the health priorities of Indigenous Australians.

All partners acknowledged a National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workforce Plan will form the framework for furthering collective action to increase the Indigenous health workforce and embed a cultural safety capability in Australia’s health system.

 

NACCHO Aboriginal Male Health : Opening video #OchreDay2018 Minister @KenWyattPM urges Aboriginal men to be warriors for health and for our children’s welfare and future, every day.

  ” In the context of NACCHO Ochre Day — with its focus on men’s health — we need Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men to continue stepping up across the board and being the warriors they have been for 65,000 years.

If we are to truly transform the health status of our First Australians, we need every Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander man to take responsibility and be proud of themselves and their heritage — proud of the oldest continuous culture on Earth, and the traditions that kept us healthy, from the very beginning.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture must also be front and centre of the early years of our children’s lives. 

It must be an integral part of our children’s early learning and quest for knowledge.

And our fathers, grandfathers and uncles — as well as our mothers, aunties and grandmothers — must play a key role in protecting our children.

Our men, in particular, must be warriors for our children’s welfare and future, every day.

Ken Wyatt AM, MP Minister for Indigenous Health opening speech Via Video : See Full Text part 2 

View Video HERE 

Today 200 + delegates at the Ochre Day Conference –Men’s Health, Our Way. Let’s Own It heard an address from The Hon. Ken Wyatt AM MP, Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health.

The Minister highlighted that “This Day shines a light on the issues that affect the social and emotional health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men.

He asks them to become “home-based heroes — modern-day warriors for health and wellbeing — who are crucial in Closing the Gap in the health outcomes experienced by our First Peoples.

Wyatt believes and NACCHO Chairperson John Singer agrees “that we need every Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander man to take responsibility and be proud of themselves and their heritage — proud of the oldest continuous culture on Earth, and the traditions that kept us healthy, from the very beginning.”

Recently John Singer attended the Council of Australian Governments Health Council meeting in Alice Springs, when it made two critical decisions to advance First Nations health. Firstly, it has made Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health a national priority, including by inviting the Indigenous Health Minister to all future meetings.

The Council also resolved to create a national Indigenous Health and Medical Workforce Plan, to focus on significantly increasing the number of First Nations doctors, nurses and health professionals.

John Singer was also grateful that the former Turnbull Government has just committed $3.4 million over the next three years, to develop the Aboriginal Health TV network. It is an anticipated that this will deliver health and wellbeing messages through television screens in 144 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, reaching up to 1.2 million people each month.

Local community TV production will be fostered and encouraged, to ensure that the broadcasts are relevant and engaging for their audiences. Health messages will be delivered on issues such as smoking, eye and ear checks, skin conditions, diet, immunisation, sexual health, diabetes and drug and alcohol treatment services.

Ochre Day is an important Aboriginal male health initiative to help raise awareness as well as provide an opportunity to draw national public awareness to Aboriginal male health and social and emotional wellbeing.

https://nacchocommunique.com/category/aboriginal-malemens-health/

Part 2 Minister Ken Wyatt Transcript 

Good morning. In West Australian Noongar language, I say “kaya wangju” – hello and welcome.

I acknowledge the Muwinina people, on whose land you are gathered today, and pay my respect to Elders past and present.

Apologies that I am unable to join you in person — but I am grateful for the opportunity to address you about the critical importance of men’s health.

I congratulate the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation for the leadership it has shown in raising awareness of the importance of the health of First Nations men, through the creation of Ochre Day.

This Day shines a light on the issues that affect the social and emotional health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men.

This summit provides a welcome opportunity for all of you to hear the latest health and medical developments, share ideas — and learn more about how, together, we can improve the health of our men.

I believe that the word “ochre” perfectly encapsulates the way forward, to secure lasting change.

For thousands of years – and still today – ochre has been a marker of tradition and respect.

It has been dug up and used from time immemorial, to help tell our stories through decoration, dance and painting.

Like ochre, respect for culture will, I believe, play a vital role in improving the health of our First Nations people.

For at least 65,000 years, our societies have been family oriented, with responsibilities shared between men and women.

Women playing their key roles as mothers and protectors.

But equally, men, playing their parts as father figures and family shields.

Why am I saying this?

Because I believe that home-based heroes — modern- day warriors for health and wellbeing — are crucial in Closing the Gap in the health outcomes experienced by our First Peoples.

And in the context of Ochre Day — with its focus on men’s health — we need Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men to continue stepping up across the board and being the warriors they have been for 65,000 years.

If we are to truly transform the health status of our First Australians, we need every Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander man to take responsibility and be proud of themselves and their heritage — proud of the oldest continuous culture on Earth, and the traditions that kept us healthy, from the very beginning.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture must also be front and centre of the early years of our children’s lives.

It must be an integral part of our children’s early learning and quest for knowledge.

And our fathers, grandfathers and uncles — as well as our mothers, aunties and grandmothers — must play a key role in protecting our children.

Our men, in particular, must be warriors for our children’s welfare and future, every day.

In a targeted manner, the development of local warriors has taken a significant step forward this month, with the new Hearing for Learning initiative, launched in the Northern Territory.

As you know, the alarmingly high rates of childhood ear infection in both regional and urban communities can hinder our children’s development and limit their opportunities as adults.

First Nations children suffer an average of 32 months of hearing loss compared with three months for other Australian children, as well as unacceptably high levels of otitis media.

A healthy ear one day may show signs of infection the next.

While doctors and specialists attend many communities and work hard with families to protect hearing, we need local people to continuously monitor our children’s ears and maintain strong messages about the importance of ear health.

With almost $8 million from the Turnbull and Northern Territory Governments, and the Balnaves Foundation, the Hearing for Learning initiative will develop a network of up to 40 ear health warriors, to do just that across 20 communities.

They will be local people, speaking their local languages, and living with and communicating directly with local parents and families.

They will strengthen and complement the work of fly-in fly-out ear specialists and protect the hearing of up to 5,000 children from birth to 16 years old.

Hearing for Learning aims to dramatically lift the capacity of families and communities to identify ear disease within the first few months of life and then maintain vigilance.

These ear health warriors will integrate with existing primary care services, assisting health professionals to diagnose and manage ear disease and where necessary, to refer children for specialist treatment.

I hold considerable hope for this project, and I believe there is potential for it to be replicated across other states and territories, once the implementation has been proven.

Building on this local warriors theme, I attended the Council Of Australian Governments Health Council meeting in Alice Springs earlier this month, when it made two critical decisions to advance First Nations health.

Firstly, it has made Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health a national priority, including by inviting the Indigenous Health Minister to all future meetings.

Secondly, the Council resolved to create a national Indigenous Health and Medical Workforce Plan, to focus on significantly increasing the number of First Nations doctors, nurses and health professionals.

This is about more Aboriginal doctors, nurses and health workers on country and in our towns and cities.

While it will be positive for creating First Nations jobs across Australia, it has particular potential for tackling chronic disease and improving the lives of people in remote communities.

This plan is a high priority and we can expect further announcements to bolster the local Aboriginal health workforce in coming months.

I would also like to highlight another national project which I believe has great potential to help improve men’s health awareness.

The Turnbull Government has just committed $3.4 million over the next three years, to develop the Aboriginal Health TV network.

This will deliver health and wellbeing messages through television screens in hundreds of Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, reaching up to 1.2 million people each month.

Local community production will be fostered and encouraged, to ensure that the broadcasts are relevant and engaging for their audiences.

Health messages will be delivered on issues such as smoking, eye and ear checks, skin conditions, diet, immunisation, sexual health, diabetes and drug and alcohol treatment services.

Content will be developed by the Aboriginal Health TV Network in partnership with local Aboriginal health services, to ensure it is culturally appropriate and relevant.

The new network will also use social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube to extend its reach and engagement.

Its potential is vast, and I encourage everyone to consider how the network could be used to engage local men and help them understand how they can improve their health.

The Turnbull Government’s commitment to working and walking together for better First Nations health is absolute.

The Government has also initiated development of a National Male Health Strategy for the period 2020-2030.

Building on the 2010 National Male Health Policy, a key consideration of the new Strategy will be addressing the specific health needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men and boys.

I look forward to hearing how your work during this two-day summit can inform the strategy.

Like every one of you here today, I am deeply committed to Closing the Gap.

Fundamental to this is the continuous improvement of the health of our First Nations men.

For now – and for the future – let’s join together with local men across the nation and support and encourage them to go forward as warriors for health.

Thank you.

 NACCHO Aboriginal Hearing Health : #OMOZ2018 Ear Health Project Officers will spearhead a new $7.9 million #HearingforLearning program to fight hearing loss among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander childre

Hearing for Learning aims to dramatically lift the capacity for communities to identify ear disease within the first few months of life.

Infants rarely show signs of ear pain, so infections are not detected and diseases like otitis media persist and progress.

By 12 months of age, only five per cent of First Nations children in remote communities have bilateral normal hearing, compared with over 80 per cent of children in the rest of Australia.

Children with undiagnosed hearing loss tend to fall behind at school due to delayed speech and language development.

This can have a huge impact on their early years, future employment opportunities and their chance of a happy and successful life.”

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM

The Territory Labor Government promised to put children at the centre of our decision-making, because we want a brighter future for our kids – a future filled with opportunity.

When we focus on the first 1000 days of a child’s life, we know we get better outcomes for their future, and that’s what this partnership aims to do.

Hearing health has an enormous impact on a child’s development, and by addressing this at a community level, the entire community will benefit.” 

NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner

Watch video 

 

Read over 40 Aboriginal Ear and Hearing articles published by NACCHO over last 6 years

Hearing is essential for strong early childhood development and chronic hearing problems in children cause education difficulties leading to entrenched disadvantage.

The Hearing for Learning Initiative is a ground-breaking 5-year investment combining public and private funding to solve this serious health and education problem “

Professor Alan Cass Director Menzies School of Health Research

When we learned about the chronic nature of ear disease in children living in remote communities in the Northern Territory, we could not ignore the fact that this likely leads to profound disadvantage in health, education and employment outcomes.

We believe more must be done and the next step is to support the community to deliver a solution.

Philanthropy plays a unique role in recognising and piloting new approaches, however, it requires partnership with government to deliver these approaches at scale.

The Government is to be applauded for putting this unique partnership together to solve what has now become a serious epidemic.

Neil Balnaves AO, Founder, The Balnaves Foundation and Chancellor, Charles Darwin University

Dozens of local Ear Health Project Officers will spearhead a new $7.9 million program to fight hearing loss among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in the Northern Territory.

The Hearing for Learning initiative will be established in 20 urban, rural and remote sites, where up to 40 local people will strengthen and complement the work of fly-in fly-out (FIFO) ear specialists.

“This is an exciting new opportunity to remove the preventable blight of hearing loss from current and future generations,” said Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM.

“These local ear health warriors will integrate with existing primary care services, to help protect the hearing of up to 5,000 children from birth to 16 years old.

“Lifting the capacity of local families to recognise, report and treat ear problems early promises to help our children reach their full potential.”

The initiative will be implemented by the Menzies School of Health Research and co-led by Professor Amanda Leach and Associate Professor Kelvin Kong.

The Hearing for Learning is a ground-breaking 5-year initiative by the Northern Territory Government, founded on scientific research by Northern Territory scientists at Menzies School of Health Research, combining public and private funding to solve this serious health and education problem.

$2.4 million from NT Government

$2.5 million from The Balnaves Foundation

$3 million from the Federal Government

Hearing for Learning aims to dramatically lift the capacity for communities to identify ear disease within the first few months of life,” said Minister Wyatt.

“Infants rarely show signs of ear pain, so infections are not detected and diseases like otitis media persist and progress.

“By 12 months of age, only five per cent of First Nations children in remote communities have bilateral normal hearing, compared with over 80 per cent of children in the rest of Australia.”

“Children with undiagnosed hearing loss tend to fall behind at school due to delayed speech and language development,” Minister Wyatt said.

“This can have a huge impact on their early years, future employment opportunities and their chance of a happy and successful life.”

The Menzies School of Health Research aims to make Hearing for Learning a care model that can be replicated across the nation.

Hearing for Learning will complement the Government’s existing ear health programs, including Healthy Ears, which together will receive funding of $81.8 million over four years from 2018–19.

This includes $30 million for a new outreach program to provide annual hearing assessment, referral and follow-up treatment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children before they start school.

NACCHO Aboriginal #HealthBudget18 Press Release @KenWyattMP Federal Government announces new funding model for ACCHS Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services #Budget2018NACCHO

 

 ” It is important to strengthen and expand our Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services  role as primary care providers in our communities as there will be 1 million Aboriginal people 2030, ”

NACCHO Chair Mr John Singer believes ‘that funding certainty is critical to ACCHSs achieving good health outcomes.

 

See our live interviews on NACCHO Facebook

Picture above : Day after Budget night and NACCHO Chair faces media at Parliament House

The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) has welcomed the Budget announcement of a new needs based funding formula model for the Indigenous Australians’ Health Program (IAHP).

Although this new model requires further refinement, feedback and work.

Download this NACCHO Press Release

NACCHO Press Release Government announces new funding model for ACCHS

This new model for our 144 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service (ACCHS) provides funding for our primary health care services and now excludes 7 inconsistent data points related to NKPIs.

NACCHO Chair Mr John Singer believes ‘that funding certainty is critical to ACCHSs achieving good health outcomes.

Mr John Singer called on the government to ensure there was no adverse impact on our Model of Care.

NACCHO welcomes the 5-year funding agreements and grandfathering arrangements under this new model.

NACCHO welcomes the new money for preventing and treating complex chronic health conditions such as Eye disease ($34.3 million) hearing loss ($30.0 million) and crusted scabies ($4.8 million).

Acknowledges the new investment in remote renal services and infrastructure with a MBS item for dialysis.

Also, the $105.7 over four years to deliver additional residential aged care places and home care packages in remote Indigenous communities.

The Government has advised that the new funding model can be varied up to July 2019 and NACCHO will continue work in consultation with the Funding Model committees.

Aboriginal controlled health services provide about three million episodes of care each year for about 350,000 people and employ about 6,000 staff.

Post 1 of our NACCHO Posts on #Budget2018 NACCHO HERE

Post 2 will be the NACCHO Chair Press Release and Analysis above

Post 3 will be Health Peak bodies press release summary

Post 4 will be Government Press Releases

 

NACCHO Research NEWS : Indigenous Health Minister @KenWyattMP AM officially launches @MurdochUni #NgangkYira an Australian-first centre to boost Aboriginal health by fast-tracking social and cultural research.

“This unique centre aligns strongly with the Turnbull Government’s holistic, whole-of-life approach to improving First Peoples’ health.

Ngangk Yira means ‘rising sun’ in Noongar and aims to expose and reduce the broader social inequities that affect the health of many of our people.

Targeting and understanding the social and cultural determinants of health is crucial, because these factors can account for up to half the life expectancy gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians.”

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM has officially launched an Australian-first centre to boost Aboriginal health by fast-tracking social and cultural research.

See Murdoch University press Release part 2 below

See the research projects seek to close the gap in Aboriginal health Part 3 Below

Hear from Professors Rhonda Marriott and Fiona Stanley, and meet Aboriginal midwife Valerie Ah Chee in the Ngangk Yira launch video

https://player.vimeo.com/api/player.js

Minister Wyatt said Murdoch University’s Ngangk Yira Aboriginal Health and Social Equity Research Centre promises new methods of tackling Closing the Gap challenges.

Minister Wyatt said the new centre would focus on practical health solutions, including research into the importance of cultural respect, education and equality.

“Ngangk Yira’s Birthing on Noongar Boodjar study has already revealed a shortage of culturally secure maternity care in hospitals,” Minister Wyatt said.

“The centre’s work is about giving children the best start in life and the opportunity to reach their full potential as they grow into adults.”

Minister Wyatt is Patron of the new centre. Co-Patron is Fiona Stanley AC.

Research will be conducted by Aboriginal researchers, in partnership with other Australian and international experts in maternal health, youth resilience and mental health.

Ngangk Yira studies will be carried out in close consultation with Aboriginal elders.

Part 2

Murdoch University is this week launching an Aboriginal health research centre – the first of its kind in Australia – to address the urgent and complex ‘wicked’ problems affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and social equity.

The Ngangk Yira Research Centre for Aboriginal Health and Social Equity will focus on translational research that provides practical solutions to improve health, educational and social outcomes for Aboriginal families and their communities.

Led by Aboriginal maternal and child health academic Professor Rhonda Marriott, the Centre has as patrons eminent child and Aboriginal health advocate Professor Fiona Stanley AC and Federal Minister for Indigenous Health Hon Ken Wyatt, MP.

Research is conducted by Aboriginal researchers in partnership with leading WA and international, maternal health, youth resilience and mental health experts and services and with the close involvement of community elders and stakeholders.

Taking a connected life course approach from pregnancy, to young adulthood, and parenthood the Centre’s research recognises that a strong start in life is fundamental for healthy and resilient children, families and communities, Professor Marriott said.

“To grow strong Aboriginal communities, we must start at the beginning by supporting mothers and families every step of the journey from pregnancy. Even before a baby is born, the environment  has a big impact on lifelong social, physical and emotional health,” Professor Marriott said.

Murdoch University Vice Chancellor Professor Eeva Leinonen said Ngangk Yira’s work had the potential to transform the real-life experiences of Aboriginal families and their communities.

“We will be pioneering the practical changes that will change the life course of the next generation of Aboriginal youth, and informing key changes to state and national policy, practice and education to support these outcomes,” Professor Leinonen said.

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt said: “The work of this centre will help to push out life expectancy and is likely to reduce the prevalence rates of renal disease and many of the later chronic conditions because children will grow up healthy and resilient. Like a house, a solid foundation gives strength to the structure and, equally, the foundation of life and being born healthy and well means that your life’s journey will be stronger and longer.”

A recently completed four-year NHMRC-funded Ngangk Yira project, Birthing on Noongar Boodjar, highlighted a shortage of high-quality, culturally secure maternity care in WA hospitals that was critical to improved maternity care and childbirth outcomes for Aboriginal mothers and their babies.

Other projects underway include the Baby Coming – You Ready program that provides a mental health screening tool for postnatal depression to assist young parents during pregnancy and their babies first year.  This is expected to bolster the social and emotional wellbeing of new parents and support improved birth and developmental outcomes for their babies.

The Indigenous Young People’s Resilience and Wellbeing project is a long-term study of Aboriginal youth aged 15 to 18 to better understand factors affecting their resilience and wellbeing and to improve youth services and community programs to address these.

Parental mental health and its impact on children’s mental health will also be examined through a population-based Linked Data Project that will study the type, scale and timing of mental health problems in young Aboriginal people and their families. Data will be used to address some critical gaps in support for mental health development in “the critical first 1001 days” of a child’s life.

This research is expected to improve knowledge of the mental and physical health of Aboriginal children in Western Australia, pregnancy outcomes, child abuse and neglect, disability, contact with the juvenile justice system and education.

The Centre’s work to identify ways to make Aboriginal families healthier and more resilient is also supported by strong partnerships with academics and experts in NSW, Canada and the UK, along with the Telethons Kids’ Institute, the University of Notre Dame and international universities.

To learn more about Ngangk Yira click here.

Part 3 About Ngangk Yira

Murdoch University’s Ngangk Yira Research Centre supports the University’s commitment to improving Aboriginal health, wellbeing and social equity through innovative and translational research.

Ngangk Yira’s research takes a connected approach from pregnancy, young adulthood, to parenthood and the transition to older adulthood, recognising the evidence that a strong start in life is fundamental for healthy and resilient children, families and communities.

Aboriginal researchers lead the Centre’s projects in partnership with non-Aboriginal colleagues and with the close involvement of community elders.

Its work is already pioneering the practical changes that will change the life course of the next generation of Aboriginal youth and which will inform translatable outcomes to state and national policy, practice and education.

Upcoming studies will help better identify and address risk factors for mental wellbeing in mothers and young families and look at ways to build resilience in Aboriginal youth.

Ngangk Yira brings together an experienced team of researchers, led by Professor Rhonda Marriot. Professor Fiona Stanley and the Federal Minister for Indigenous Health, the Hon Ken Wyatt, are patrons of the Centre.

Ngangk Yira

Ngangk means both ‘mother’ and ‘sun’. Alongside the Noongar word Yira, the meaning expands to: the rising sun (ngangk yira). Together, they have added spiritual meaning for the sun’s giving of life to all things in its passage across the sky.

Our research projects seek to close the gap in Aboriginal health

Birthing on Noongar Boodjar

Since 2014, researchers at Murdoch University have been collecting data to better understand the cultural needs of Aboriginal women and different meanings of ‘cultural security’ when Birthing on Country.

Interviews with Aboriginal mothers, senior women and elders examined what women want and expect from their maternity health services. An understanding of the knowledge and experience of midwives in supporting Aboriginal women’s maternity care was also gained.

The study found that more Aboriginal midwives and culturally secure models of care in WA hospitals are critical to closing the gap in maternity care and childbirth outcomes for Aboriginal women and families. Both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal participants identified the negative impact of racism and racial stereotyping on Aboriginal women’s birthing experiences.

The research recognised that better access to Aboriginal staff and family support during pregnancy and childbirth helped empower Aboriginal mothers.

Learn more in our news story, and the Ngangk Yira brochure.

Baby Coming – You Ready?

Perinatal mental health issues such as depression and anxiety can result in detrimental impacts on pregnancy and postnatal periods. Baby Coming – You Ready? was designed by Aboriginal men and women to assist young parents during pregnancy and their child’s first year.

It is different from other mental health screening and assessment tools because it’s a shared assessment between the client and the clinician, with a goal to bringing clarity to complex situations. The model encourages self-evaluation and reflection and fosters an understanding for both users.

This web-based interactive app will do much more than screen for perinatal depression. It will use visual images on a touch screen device to portray emotions, circumstances and events, both positive and challenging, that a mother or father-to-be may be experiencing.

Baby Coming – You Ready? is expected to see improvements in attendance at antenatal appointments, bolstering the social and emotional wellbeing of expectant and new parents, and better birth and development outcomes for babies.

Learn more in the Ngangk Yira brochure.

Indigenous Young People’s Resilience and Wellbeing (2017 – 2020)

Launched in the second half of 2017, this project is a longitudinal study of Aboriginal youth across two sites; one here in Noongar country and one in the Gamilaroi nation in New South Wales.

The project is expected to enhance understanding of Aboriginal youth and improve our knowledge of their resilience and wellbeing.

Learn more in the Ngangk Yira brochure.

Linked Data Project

Parental mental health and its impact on children’s outcomes will be examined through data collected between 1990 – 2015. The data will be used to study the type, scale and timing of mental health problems in young people and their families, and address critical gaps in mental health, with a focus on the “critical 1001 day” period for children.

Key outcomes will include improved knowledge of the mental and physical health of Aboriginal children in Western Australia, pregnancy outcomes, child abuse and neglect, disability, contact with the juvenile justice system and education.

Learn more in the Ngangk Yira brochure.

Helping to build healthy and resilient communities

Learn more about our first complete project, the four-year Birthing on Noongar Boodjar, and Baby Coming – You Ready?, Ngangk Yira’s aim to find meaningful solutions to real problems.

Hear from Professors Rhonda Marriott and Fiona Stanley, and meet Aboriginal midwife Valerie Ah Chee in the Ngangk Yira launch video.

NACCHO Aboriginal Youth Health News @KenWyattMP launches Aboriginal Youth Health Strategy 2018-2023, Today’s young people, tomorrow’s leaders at @TheAHCWA

“ The youth workshops confirmed young people’s biggest concerns are often not about physical illness, they are issues around mental health and wellbeing, pride, strength and resilience, and ensuring they can make the most of their lives

Flexible learning and cultural and career mentoring for better education and jobs were highlighted, along with the importance of culturally comfortable health care services.

While dealing with immediate illness and disease is crucial, this strategy’s long-term vision is vital and shows great maturity from our young people.”

Federal Minister for Health and Aged Care Ken Wyatt, AM launched AHCWA’s Western Australia Aboriginal Youth Health Strategy 2018-2023, Today’s young people, tomorrow’s leaders at AHCWA’s 2018 State Sector Conference at the Esplanade Hotel in Fremantle. Read the Ministers full press release PART 2 Below

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NACCHO Aboriginal Health @TheAHCWA pioneering new ways of working in Aboriginal Health :Our Culture Our Community Our Voice Our Knowledge

“If we are to make gains in the health of young Aboriginal people, we must allow their voices to be heard, their ideas listened to and their experiences acknowledged.

Effective, culturally secure health services are the key to unlocking the innate value of young Aboriginal people, as individuals and as strong young people, to become our future leaders.”

AHCWA Chairperson Vicki O’Donnell said good health was fundamental for young Aboriginal people to flourish in education, employment and to remain socially connected.

Download the PDF HERE

The Aboriginal Health Council of Western Australia (AHCWA) has this launched its new blueprint for addressing the health inequalities of young Aboriginal people.

“The Turnbull Government is proud to have supported this ground-breaking work and I congratulate everyone involved,” Minister Wyatt said.

“Young people are the future, and thinking harder and deeper about their needs and talking to them about how to meet them is the way forward.”

Developed with and on behalf of young Aboriginal people in WA, the strategy is the culmination of almost a decade of AHCWA’s commitment and strategic advocacy in Aboriginal youth health.

The strategy considered feedback from young Aboriginal people and health workers during 24 focus groups hosted by AHCWA across the Kimberley, Pilbara, Midwest-Gascoyne, Goldfields, South-West, Great Southern and Perth metropolitan areas last year.

In addition, two state-wide surveys were conducted for young people and service providers to garner their views about youth health in WA.

During the consultation, participants revealed obstacles to good health including boredom due to a lack of youth appropriate extracurricular activities, sporting programs and other avenues to improve social and emotional wellbeing.

Of major concern for some young Aboriginal people were systemic barriers of poverty, homelessness, and the lack of adequate food or water in their communities.

Significantly, young Aboriginal people shared experiences of how boredom was a factor contributing to violence, mental health problems, and alcohol and other drug use issues.

They also revealed that racism, bullying and discrimination had affected their health, with social media platforms used to mitigate boredom leading to issues of cyberbullying, peer pressure and personal violence and in turn, depression, trauma and social isolation.

Ms O’Donnell said the strategy cited a more joined-up service delivery method as a key priority, with the fragmentation and a lack of coordination in some areas making it difficult for young Aboriginal people to find and access services they need.

“The strategy provides an opportunity for community led solutions to repair service fragmentation, and open doors to improved navigation pathways for young Aboriginal people,” she said.

Ms O’Donnell said the strategy also recognised that culture was intrinsic to the health and wellbeing of young Aboriginal people.

“Recognition of and understanding about culture must be at the centre of the planning, development and implementation of health services and programs for young Aboriginal people,” she said.

“AHCWA has a long and proud tradition of leadership and advocacy in prioritising Aboriginal young people and placing their health needs at the forefront.”

Under the strategy, AHCWA will establish the Aboriginal Youth Health Program Outcomes Council and local community-based Aboriginal Youth Cultural Knowledge and Mentor Groups.

The strategy also mandates to work with key partners to help establish pathways and links for young Aboriginal people to transition from education to employment, support young Aboriginal people who have left school early or are at risk of disengaging from education; and work with local schools to implement education-to-employment plans.

More than 260 delegates from WA’s 22 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services are attending the two-day conference at the Esplanade Hotel Fremantle on April 11 and 12.

Over the two days, 15 workshops and keynote speeches will be held. AHCWA will present recommendations from the conference in a report to the state and federal governments to highlight the key issues about Aboriginal health in WA and determine future strategic actions.

The conference agenda can be found here: http://www.cvent.com/events/aboriginal-health-our-culture-our-communities-our-voice-our-knowledge/agenda-d4410dfc616942e9a30b0de5e8242043.aspx

Part 2 Ministers Press Release

A unique new youth strategy puts cultural and family strength, education, employment and leadership at the centre of First Nations people’s health and wellbeing.

Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt AM today launched the landmark Western Australian Aboriginal Youth Health Strategy, which sets out a five-year program with the theme “Today’s young people, tomorrow’s leaders”.

“This is an inspiring but practical roadmap that includes a detailed action plan and a strong evaluation process to measure success,” Minister Wyatt said.

“It sets an example for other health services and other States and Territories but most importantly, it promises to help set thousands of WA young people on the right path for healthier and more fulfilling lives.”

Produced by the Aboriginal Health Council of WA (AHCWA) and based on State wide youth workshops and consultation, the strategy highlights five key health domains:

    • Strength in culture – capable and confident
    • Strength in family and healthy relationships
    • Educating to employ
    • Empowering future leaders
    • Healthy now, healthy future

Each domain includes priorities, actions and a “showcase initiative” that is already succeeding and could be replicated to spread the benefits further around the State.

Development of the strategy was supported by a $315,000 Turnbull Government grant, through the Indigenous Australians Health Program.

“I congratulate AHCWA and everyone involved because hearing the clear voices of these young Australians is so important for their development now and for future generations,” the Minister said.