NACCHO @RACGP Aboriginal Health Survey : 2 of 2 From now until February 2019, NACCHO and @RACGP  wants to hear from you about implementing the National Guide and supporting culturally responsive healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

In 2018–19, NACCHO and the RACGP are working on further initiatives and we want your input!

Download this post as PDF and share with your networks

 We-seek-your-input-NACCHO-RACGP-Project

What we are currently doing:

  • Conducting practice team surveys and focus groups to:
    • understand current system requirements and how they can improve identification rates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients in mainstream practices and
    • integrate the key recommendations from the National Guide into clinical software
  • Establishing a Collaborative with the Improvement Foundation to conduct rapid quality improvement cycles leading to the provision of better healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
  • Engaging with medical software vendors to understand how we can improve identification rates and integrate the National Guide into clinical software
  • Developing resources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people regarding preventive health assessments and follow up care
  • Working with our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led Project Reference Group to carry out all project activities.

From now until February 2019, we want to hear from you!

Do you have ideas, solutions or examples of good practice relating to:

  • how health services can ensure that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients receive patient centred, quality health assessments (715) that meet their needs?
  • the resources that would support mainstream general practice teams to provide culturally responsive healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people?
  • how guidelines, such as the National Guide, can be integrated into clinical software?
  • features of clinical software that will support improved identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients at your practice?
  • features of a 715 health assessment template that will support a comprehensive health assessment?

To participate in a short survey, please CLICK HERE

We also welcome your feedback and input at aboriginalhealth@racgp.org.au

With your feedback, we will:

  • understand the needs of our cohort
  • understand what works through our Collaborative model for improvement report
  • develop new resources to support you and your team with delivering better healthcare to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples regardless of where care is sought
  • share the lessons with mainstream general practice and Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

Early detection, preventing disease and promoting health

The National Guide is a practical resource intended for all health professionals delivering primary healthcare to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people.

Its purpose is to provide GPs and other health professionals with an accessible, user-friendly guide to best practice preventive healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.

See Website

New to the third edition!

National Guide podcasts

Subscribe to the National Guide Podcast (listen to the third edition) to hear host Lauren Trask, NACCHO Implementation Officer and CQI expert, speak to GPs  and researchers on updates and changes in the third edition of the National Guide.

Downloads

 National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (PDF 9.8 MB)

 Evidence base to a preventive health assessment in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (PDF 9.4 MB)

 National Guide Lifecycle chart (child) (PDF 555 KB)

 National Guide Lifecycle chart (young) (PDF 1 MB)

 National Guide Lifecycle chart (adult) (PDF 1 MB)

NACCHO and @RACGP a very productive partnership in Aboriginal health #NACCHOagm2018 Report 3 of 5 @RACGP supports the #National Guide #Ulurustatement #FirstNationsVoice and takes aim at racism in healthcare

NACCHO’s [National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation] conference was a great opportunity to engage directly with members and workforce in the Aboriginal community controlled health sector, and to share the important work the RACGP is doing to support the growth of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander general practice workforce,’

Associate Professor Peter O’Mara see Part 1 Below

The RACGP strongly supports the recommendations in the Uluru statement as a way to make real progress to close the gap in health inequality,

‘The Uluru Statement encourages a stronger voice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, who are the best placed to make decisions about what is important to them and how to make the changes needed to make a difference.’

The RACGP is committed to improving the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It is one of our greatest priorities,

President Dr Harry Nespolon see Part 2 Below

Racism is a major barrier for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in accessing quality and appropriate healthcare.

The reality for many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is that they are sometimes treated differently in healthcare settings, and as a result, their health outcomes are poorer than for other Australians.’

That is why our revised position statement considers the effects of racism on both patients and workforce, as well as the effects of systemic racism through our institutions.’

Chair of the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Associate Professor Peter O’Mara said that racism was a major contributor to poor social and emotional wellbeing . See part 3 below

Part 1 RACGP at #NACCHOagm2018

The 2018 NACCHO member’s conference ran from 31 October – 2 November. Its theme for this year is ‘Investing in what works – Aboriginal community controlled health’. Keynote speakers included Minister for Indigenous Health, Ken Wyatt, NACCHO Chairman John Singer and Co-Director of the University of British Columbia’s Northern Medical Program, Professor Nadine Caron.

GP news report from  Amanda Lyons

Associate Professor O’Mara discussed how the RACGP is helping to meet a key goal – to increase the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workforce in the health sector – that is enshrined in the partnership agreement between the Federal Government, the Council of Medical Colleges of Australia (CPMC), the Aboriginal Indigenous Doctor’s Association (AIDA) and NACCHO, to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

‘The RACGP has focused both on strengthening opportunities for GPs to work sustainably in the sector, and to provide support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to successfully navigate education and training pathways to becoming a GP,’ Associate Professor O’Mara said.

Key RACGP initiatives include annual awards for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, early career doctors and organisations working in the community sector, and advocacy work for improvements in key programs such as the Australian General Practice Training Salary Support Programme, which provides ACCHOs with financial support for general practice registrars.

Associate Professor O’Mara’s participation in the conference also underlines the strong relationship between NACCHO and the RACGP, formalised in a 2014 Memorandum of Understanding. This relationship has resulted in much fruitful work and the development of key resources in the field of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health.

‘The RACGP has enjoyed a productive partnership with NACCHO over many years, which has resulted in important collaborations, such as the National Guide [to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people], and our current joint project to improve the quality of healthcare delivered to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples,’ Associate Professor O’Mara said.

NACCHO CEO, Pat Turner, Former NACCHO Chair, John Singer, and Chair of RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Associate Professor Peter O’Mara at the launch of the National Guide earlier this year

Part 2 The RACGP supports developing the Uluru model so that it can be put to the broader community for agreement. 

The ‘Uluru statement from the heart’ calls for an independent voice enshrined in the Australian Constitution, and a Makarrata Commission to supervise agreement-making and truth-telling with governments.

The statement is supported by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia, and has been endorsed by the RACGP.

GP NEWS Report from  Amanda Lyons 

‘The RACGP is committed to improving the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It is one of our greatest priorities,’ President Dr Harry Nespolon told newsGP.

‘Constitutional change of this kind must be considered a national priority to be successful.

‘The RACGP supports developing the Uluru model so that it can be put to the broader community for agreement. We encourage our members to support this process.’

The RACGP previously endorsed the Uluru statement as part of its submission to the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition Relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples 2018 (the Committee), which was formed with the purpose of investigating the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples within the Australian constitution.

The Committee is due to present its final report by the end of this month.

‘The RACGP strongly supports the recommendations in the Uluru statement as a way to make real progress to close the gap in health inequality,’ Dr Nespolon said.

‘The Uluru Statement encourages a stronger voice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, who are the best placed to make decisions about what is important to them and how to make the changes needed to make a difference.’

The RACGP endorsed the ‘Uluru statement from the heart’ during NAIDOC week. 

According to Dr Anita Watts, an Aboriginal GP, academic and member of the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health board, the Uluru statement and constitutional recognition are vital to the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

‘Without recognition, there cannot be self-determination for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples,’ Dr Watts told newsGP earlier this year.

‘Health outcomes are inextricably linked to self-determination. There is overwhelming evidence to support improvement in health outcomes when Indigenous peoples take greater control over their health.’

PART 3 RACGP takes aim at racism in healthcare

Read previous NACCHO article HERE

And racism is a trigger for many health risk factors such as substance abuse, distress and mental health conditions and harm to physiological systems.

These are some of the reasons why the RACGP has updated its zero-tolerance position on racism in healthcare to focus more broadly on the effects of institutional racism.

GP News Report from  Doug Hendrie

RACGP President Dr Harry Nespolon said the revised position statement sent a clear message.

‘The RACGP wants to send the message that racism is unacceptable and harmful, not only for our patients, but also to the doctors, doctors in-training and staff members in our practices and health services,’ he said.

The RACGP’s updated position statement focuses on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, but the statement has wider applicability across Australia’s diverse patients and healthcare professionals.

‘Challenging institutional racism requires a systemic response … Action on institutional racism requires adapting approaches, attitudes and behaviours through up-skilling staff, reviewing policies, procedures and systems,’ the statement reads.

‘The RACGP strongly supports calls from the Close the Gap Steering Committee for a national inquiry into institutional racism.’

Racism also hurts Australia’s diverse health professional workforce.

‘Acts of racism and discrimination negatively impact the development of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander medical workforce. Results from [the Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association] 2016 member survey found that more than 60% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander medical student, doctor and specialist members had experienced racism and/or bullying every day, or at least once a week,’ the statement reads.

‘The beyondblue National Mental Health Survey of Doctors and Medical Students similarly found that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander doctors reported racism as major source of stress, at nearly 10 times the rate of non-Indigenous counterparts.

The RACGP’s position is:

• a zero tolerance approach to racism
• that every practice provide respectful and culturally appropriate care to all patients
• GPs, registrars, health professionals, practice staff and medical students are supported to address any experience of racism
• that members are aware of, and advocate for patients who are affected by institutional racism

Chair of the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Associate Professor Peter O’Mara said that racism was a major contributor to poor social and emotional wellbeing.

‘Racism is a major barrier for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in accessing quality and appropriate healthcare,’ Associate Professor O’Mara said.

‘The reality for many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is that they are sometimes treated differently in healthcare settings, and as a result, their health outcomes are poorer than for other Australians.’

‘That is why our revised position statement considers the effects of racism on both patients and workforce, as well as the effects of systemic racism through our institutions.’

Associate Professor O’Mara said GPs were well placed to show leadership in addressing racism, discrimination and bias.

‘In challenging racism, practice teams will be able to provide more culturally responsive healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and improve care for all patients,’ he said.

The RACGP is a supporter of the Australian Government’s Racism. It Stops With Me campaign, which encourages people to respond to prejudice and discrimination in their neighbourhoods, schools, universities, clubs, and workplaces.

The RACGP will next year roll out its Practice Experience Program, designed to boost support to often-isolated non-vocationally registered doctors, many of whom are international medical graduates, as they work towards Fellowship.

NACCHO and @RACGP National Guide to a preventative health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people : 2 new podcasts released #MentalHealth Dr #TimSenior and #Smoking Professor David Thomas @MenziesResearch Plus Interview Dr @normanswan

 ” There’s quite a lot that is in new in this third edition. We surveyed general practitioners across Australia and got a fantastic response rate. And so we came up with new topics that were about fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, preventing child maltreatment, family abuse and violence, lung cancer, as well as some more emphasis on the health of young people.

But of course the existing topics which comprise the vast bulk of primary healthcare and preventive interventions like screening for alcohol, early detection of diabetes, promoting stop smoking, the benefits of immunisation, child health, like picking up anaemia early in children who are at risk, these things were revised to reflect changes in research literature.”

Dr Sophie Couzos is one of the editors of the guide. Sophie is an Associate Professor in General Practice and Rural Medicine at James Cook University in Queensland, and the project lead on the new national guide

 ” Many of the problems that confront Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders are social, they are about identity, they are about self-determination, they are about poverty and disadvantage, they are about access to education.

You might not blame a GP for thinking, well, what am I going to do about all those, because those are the upstream causes of the problems that Aboriginal people can confront, not all, but can confront.

But you are arguing presumably that there are just simple things that GPs could do that would make a difference without having to change the world.”

Norman Swan Radio full Radio National Interview with Dr Sophie Couzos See Part 2 below

2 National Guide podcasts have been released this month:

bit.ly/2DZ5pzm

A/Prof Peter O’Mara, NACCHO Chair John Singer Minister Ken Wyatt & RACGP President Dr Bastian Seidel launch the National guide at Parliament house 28 March

A new guide for Aboriginal preventive health was recently  released by the RACGP and NACCHO . It’s aimed at stopping conditions from developing before they occur, and also secondary prevention, which is existing conditions, from getting worse, and that’s through screening, testing and the like.

And that is made easier when a general practitioner is clued in about what conditions the people they are treating are more likely to develop.

That’s especially important for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are at increased risk of a variety of medical problems, not least being type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

That is what has prompted the development of this preventative health guide for GPs and Aboriginal healthcare services. The guide outlines health checks doctors can do, questions to ask that are aimed at picking up some of these preventable conditions.

Download the Guideline and supporting documentation

Part 2 Sophie Couzos: It’s a pleasure to be here, thanks Norman.

Norman Swan: What is the significance of this guide? You’d think that doctors should know what to do about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in terms of what to check and so on. Why do you need a guide like this?

Sophie Couzos: There’s a lot of evidence to show that doctors and healthcare providers could do a lot better in offering preventive health assessments or health checks to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population.

One of the reasons is that healthcare providers just don’t know what they should offer, how they should have a conversation, what they should talk about, what are the priority issues.

There’s a lot of variability and there’s a lot of clinical practice uncertainty as well. So when we developed the national guide way back in 2000, the late, great Dr Puggy Hunter and myself got together and thought, well, let’s provide some evidence-based guidelines to help healthcare providers offer the right sort of assessment for Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islanders.

Norman Swan: This is presumably not just for doctors and Aboriginal health workers in Aboriginal medical services, very specific community controlled organisations of which I think there are 300 outlets around Australia. Presumably a significant percentage of Aboriginal people go to regular general practitioners, so it’s for regular GPs too who’ve got Aboriginal patients.

Sophie Couzos: Absolutely. I call them mainstream general practices and they have an important role to play.

Norman Swan: There is a totally unacceptable gap, depending how you measure it, of between 11 and 17 years, that’s the life expectancy gap, but there’s all sorts of other gaps as well in terms of heart disease, kidney disease, child development and so on, and you take that comprehensive lifespan approach in this preventative guide.

Sophie Couzos: Prevention really starts from the antenatal period, and there’s preventive interventions at every point, and there’s a tremendous opportunity when a patient presents to a healthcare service provider to use that time to consider how disease can be prevented and what sort of risk factors can be identified in order to pick up conditions that may be asymptomatic, and that means that a person might have a disease and not know it, and so a preventive health check is there to pick that up. Or to have a discussion about preventing disease completely. A great example for that intervention is immunisation.

Norman Swan: Many of the problems that confront Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders are social, they are about identity, they are about self-determination, they are about poverty and disadvantage, they are about access to education.

You might not blame a GP for thinking, well, what am I going to do about all those, because those are the upstream causes of the problems that Aboriginal people can confront, not all, but can confront.

But you are arguing presumably that there are just simple things that GPs could do that would make a difference without having to change the world.

Sophie Couzos: Absolutely. I mean, problems like low birth weight can be prevented.

When you say that some aspects of Aboriginal health seem to be overwhelming for healthcare providers, well, simple things like a good antenatal care, good quality healthcare and preventive healthcare and patient-centred care can make a huge difference to health outcomes, and this is the purpose of the national guide, is to make the evidence for these sorts of interventions and choices that healthcare providers can make to improve quality care, to make it easy, make it accessible.

Norman Swan: So as you said at the beginning, it’s been going for a while. This is the third edition. What’s new in the third edition?

Sophie Couzos: There’s quite a lot that is in new in this third edition. We surveyed general practitioners across Australia and got a fantastic response rate. And so we came up with new topics that were about fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, preventing child maltreatment, family abuse and violence, lung cancer, as well as some more emphasis on the health of young people.

But of course the existing topics which comprise the vast bulk of primary healthcare and preventive interventions like screening for alcohol, early detection of diabetes, promoting stop smoking, the benefits of immunisation, child health, like picking up anaemia early in children who are at risk, these things were revised to reflect changes in research literature.

You’d think that Australia really had this right, you’d think that our Australian healthcare system is already configured around patient-centred care, but it isn’t. So there’s a lot of work to be done in improving Aboriginal people’s access to preventive healthcare, primary healthcare.

Norman Swan: So when you talk about poor access, Sophie, what are you talking about?

Sophie Couzos: I’m talking about two pieces of information that is regularly released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare which shows that access to Medicare and access to the PBS, which is the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, is much less on a per capita basis for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples than it is for other Australians.

Norman Swan: So for the level of ill health, they are underutilising what’s available.

Sophie Couzos: Yes, that’s right…

Norman Swan: And I think we’ve covered this before some years ago with the late Gavin Mooney where in fact suburbs like Toorak, Armadale, Vaucluse, Nedlands, have much higher proportion to use of these Medicare and PBS items and paradoxically they are healthier, and if you look at postcodes for Aboriginal people they are at a very low level.

Sophie Couzos: That’s right, and here’s an easy example for you, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, for every dollar that a non-Indigenous Australian spends or is expended, only 63c is spent on an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person. That is really astonishing, given the three times rate of morbidity and disease that exists in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population.

Norman Swan: So circling back to the guide, this identifies people who might need statins or anti high blood pressure tablets or other treatments, and increase the access to them.

Sophie Couzos: Absolutely, and having that continuity of care with your patient.

Norman Swan: Sophie, thanks for joining us.

Sophie Couzos: It’s a real pleasure, thanks Norman.

Norman Swan: Dr Sophie Couzos is project lead on the National Guide to Preventive Health Assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People, and a public health physician who works with the Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council. The third edition of the national guide is being launched on Wednesday at Parliament House, and it will also be available on the website of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation, NACCHO .

 

 

Minister @KenWyattMP launches NACCHO @RACGP National guide for healthcare professionals to improve health of #Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients

 

All of our 6000 staff in 145 member services in 305 health settings across Australia will have access to this new and update edition of the National Guide. It’s a comprehensive edition for our clinicians and support staff that updates them all with current medical practice.

“NACCHO is committed to quality healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients, and will work with all levels of government to ensure accessibility for all.”

NACCHO Chair John Singer said the updated National Guide would help governments improve health policy and lead initiatives that support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

You can Download the Guide via this LINK

A/Prof Peter O’Mara, NACCHO Chair John Singer Minister Ken Wyatt & RACGP President Dr Bastian Seidel launch the National guide at Parliament house this morning

“Prevention is always better than cure. Already one of the most widely used clinical guidelines in Australia, this new edition includes critical information on lung cancer, Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and preventing child and family abuse and violence.

The National Guide maximises the opportunities at every clinic visit to prevent disease and to find it early.It will help increase vigilance over previously undiagnosed conditions, by promoting early intervention and by supporting broader social change to help individuals and families improve their wellbeing.”

Minister Ken Wyatt highlights what is new to the 3rd Edition of the National Guide-including FASD, lung cancer, young people lifecycle, family abuse & violence and supporting families to optimise child safety & wellbeing : Pic Lisa Whop SEE Full Press Release Part 2 Below

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) have joined forces to produce a guide that aims to improve the level of healthcare currently being delivered to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients and close the gap.

Chair of RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Associate Professor Peter O’Mara said the third edition of the National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (the National Guide) is an important resource for all health professionals to deliver best practice healthcare to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.

“The National Guide will support all healthcare providers, not just GPs, across Australia to improve prevention and early detection of disease and illness,” A/Prof O’Mara said.

“The prevention and early detection of disease and illness can improve people’s lives and increase their lifespans.

“The National Guide will support healthcare providers to feel more confident that they are looking for health issues in the right way.”

RACGP President Dr Bastian Seidel said the RACGP is committed to tackling the health disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

“The National Guide plays a vital role in closing the gap in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health disparity,” Dr Seidel said.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should have equal access to quality healthcare across Australia and the National guide is an essential part of ensuring these services are provided.

“GPs and other healthcare providers who implement the recommendations within the National Guide will play an integral role in reducing health disparity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, and ensuring culturally responsive and appropriate healthcare is always available.”

The updated third edition of the National Guide can be found on the RACGP website and the NACCHO website.

 

Free to download on the RACGP website and the NACCHO website:

http://www.racgp.org.au/national-guide/

and NACCHO

Part 2 Prevention and Early Diagnosis Focus for a Healthier Future

The critical role of preventive care and tackling the precursors of chronic disease is being boosted in the latest guide for health professionals working to close the gap in health equality for Indigenous Australians

The critical role of preventive care and tackling the precursors of chronic disease is being boosted in the latest guide for health professionals working to close the gap in health equality for Indigenous Australians.

Minister for Indigenous Health, Ken Wyatt AM, today launched the updated third edition of the National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“Prevention is always better than cure,” said Minister Wyatt. “Already one of the most widely used clinical guidelines in Australia, this new edition includes critical information on lung cancer, Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and preventing child and family abuse and violence.

“The National Guide maximises the opportunities at every clinic visit to prevent disease and to find it early.

“It will help increase vigilance over previously undiagnosed conditions, by promoting early intervention and by supporting broader social change to help individuals and families improve their wellbeing.”

The guide, which was first published in 2005, is a joint project between the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners RACGP).

“To give you some idea of the high regard in which it is held, the last edition was downloaded 645,000 times since its release in 2012,” said Minister Wyatt.

“The latest edition highlights the importance of individual, patient-centred care and has been developed to reflect local and regional needs.

“Integrating resources like the national guide across the whole health system plays a pivotal role in helping us meet our Closing the Gap targets.

“The Turnbull Government is committed to accelerating positive change and is investing in targeted activities that have delivered significant reductions in the burden of disease.

“Rates of heart disease, smoking and binge drinking are down. We are on track to achieve the child mortality target for 2018 and deaths associated with kidney and respiratory diseases have also reduced.”

The National Guide is funded under the Indigenous Australian’s Health Programme as part of a record $3.6 billion investment across four financial years.

The RACGP received $429,000 to review, update, publish and distribute the third edition, in hard copy and electronic formats.

The National Guide is available on the RACGP website or by contacting RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health on 1800 000 251 or aboriginalhealth@racgp.org.au.

 

 

 

Aboriginal #SexualHealth News : Minister @KenWyattMP to launch the third edition NACCHO and @RACGP National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’

 

” In the fifth part of a series focusing on the coming third edition of the ‘National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’, newsGP looks at Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ sexual health and prevention from blood-borne viruses.”

The third edition of the National Guide will be launched next Wednesday 28 March by Minister Wyatt at Parliament House Canberra see content details Part 2 below

RACGP Website here

NACCHO Aboriginal Sexual Health 40 Previous articles

The NACCHO/RACGP National Guide is a resource created for primary healthcare practitioners to help them deliver best practice preventive healthcare to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people anywhere in Australia.

The National Guide is user-friendly with information that is accurate and relevant to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities. It is supported by evidence-based recommendations, good practice points, and child, youth and adult lifecycle wall charts with age-specific recommendations.

New topics 3 edition :

• Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder

• Interventions to prevent child maltreatment – optimising child health and wellbeing

• Antenatal care section is now expanded

• Family abuse and violence

• Lung cancer

• Young people lifecycle summary wall chart to complement the existing child and adult charts.

Download

National-Guide-prerelease-info-Flyer-2017

Part 1 : Sexual health education for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

Edited by Morgan Liotta

The National Guide details several resources that aim to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities through greater levels of sexual health education.

Sexually transmitted infection (STI) and blood-borne virus (BBV) rates within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations can often be difficult to identify and diagnose, due to certain cultural beliefs and a potential lack of access to appropriate healthcare in remote areas. But education and culturally appropriate primary healthcare play an essential role in helping to increase diagnosis these communities

The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation’s (NACCHO) and the RACGP’s National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (National Guide) states that the prevalence and incidence of some STIs can also be challenging to estimate accurately due to under-identification of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander status, but that rates are increasing.

The National Guide advocates for interventions by healthcare professionals to help decrease rates of STIs and BBVs in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Routine screening, education on and accessibility of condoms, hepatitis B and human papillomavirus (HPV) immunisation programs, and needle and syringe exchange programs, can all contribute to early diagnoses and prevention of STIs and BBVs, as well as appropriate management for those diagnosed with infection.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are over-represented in prison populations and have high rates of receptive sharing of syringes, both risk factors for acquiring hepatitis C. As a consequence, the hepatitis C notification rate among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people has increased by more than 20% between 2012–16, while remaining stable in non-Indigenous Australians. With new, effective treatments now available for hepatitis C, eliminating the stigma associated with the infection is a crucial strategy.

Recent research reveals that gonorrhoea notifications are seven times more common among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people than for non-Indigenous Australians. The chlamydia notification rate in major cities was found to be nearly three times as high among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people than non-Indigenous Australians, increasing to five times higher in remote areas.

In addition, rates of syphilis are again increasing in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, after declining up to 2010.

Video added by NACCHO

The National Guide reports that rates of HIV were more than two times higher for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples than for non-Indigenous Australians in 2015, and that infectious syphilis notifications have increased significantly due to a 2015 outbreak in Far North Queensland. Current syphilis infection in northern Australia is considered ‘out of control’ in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander healthcare organisations.

One example of safe-sex education is the Condom tree program in Western Australia, which aims to reduce cost barriers and feelings of shame and embarrassment by providing free condoms in local communities.

The Department of Health recently released a series of videos voiced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to help promote STI prevention in their communities. Initiatives such as these videos are designed to help reduce feelings of shame or stigma Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people may have attached to STIs and/or BBVs.

A diverse range of support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and healthcare workers, including a comprehensive HIV resource, is available for communities throughout Australia.

The National Guide details more resources, with the aim of empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities through greater levels of sexual health education and the provision of high-quality culturally appropriate primary care.

The National Guide covers further information on sexual health in the following chapters:

  • Sexual health and blood-borne viruses
  • Antenatal care
  • The health of young people
  • Alcohol
  • Family abuse and violence

The National Guide was conceived by the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) in 2001, and is now in its third edition being developed in partnership by NACCHO and The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP).

Part 2 What is the National Guide? Edition 3

Who is it for?

All health professionals delivering primary healthcare for the benefit of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Why use it?

• To help prevent disease, detect early and unrecognised disease, promote health, and consider broader social interventions, while allowing for local and regional variations.

• For evidence-based recommendations and good practice points.

• For the child, young people and adult lifecycle wall charts with age-specific recommendations.

• For the resource lists.

When will it be published?

The third edition of the National Guide and following associated resources will be available in early 2018:

• National Guide website – improved design and usability

• National Guide recommendations – limited print run for ACCHSs

• National Guide evidence base – downloadable PDF.

What’s happening in 2018 to accompany the launch of the

National Guide?

• The third edition of the National Guide will be distributed to NACCHO Affiliates and health services.

• NACCHO and RACGP will be hosting workshops across Australia to support implementation of the National Guide.

What’s new in the third edition?

New topics:

• Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder

• Interventions to prevent child maltreatment – optimising child health and wellbeing

• Antenatal care section is now expanded

• Family abuse and violence

• Lung cancer

• Young people lifecycle summary wall chart to complement the existing child and adult charts.

How to access the National Guide:

The third edition of the National Guide will be March 28

Free to download on the RACGP website and the NACCHO website:

http://www.racgp.org.au/national-guide/

and http://www.naccho.org.au

For further information, contact

RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health on 1800 000 251 or aboriginalhealth@racgp.org.au

NACCHO @RACGP Aboriginal Health and #Nutrition : The next RACGP NACCHO National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal people will examine the health effects of food insecurity.

 ” In the second of a series focusing on the coming third edition of the RACGP NACCHO National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, newsGP examines the health effects of food insecurity.

The National Guide suggests interventions to improve food security include school-based nutrition programs, structured workshops, cooking classes, demonstrations and community kitchens.

The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) and the RACGP’s National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will cover further information on food insecurity in these chapters:

  • Overweight and obesity
  • Physical activity
  • Diabetes prevention
  • Child health: Growth failure
  • Oral and dental health

To be launched at Parliament House Canberra 28 March by Minister Ken Wyatt

Ms Morgan Liotta Morgan is a newsGP staff writer

The next RACGP NACCHO National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal people will examines the health effects of food insecurity.

Food insecurity can be attributed to various physical and economic factors present in the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including limited food supplies, and lack of affordability of quality produce and nutritional education.

Traditional bush foods are a source of nutrition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in remote communities; however, when they are not available communities can rely heavily on community store and take away food.

A recent study by the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) reveals that a third of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are not consuming adequate amounts of fresh fruits and vegetables, while rates of sugar consumption are high.

Sugar consumption was targeted in recent public health campaigns initiated by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, such as Rethink sugary drink and Apunipima Cape York Health Council’s

Sugary drinks proper no good – Drink more water Youfla, both of which aimed to raise awareness about the detrimental health outcomes of over-consumption of sugar.

With access to supplies and lack of education part of the issue of food insecurity, financial burden is often also a significant factor for many residents of remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities where, in comparison with urban centres, prices for fresh food can be up to 70% higher. Residents may have no choice but to opt for cheaper, less nutritious options.

Limited awareness of nutrition may also contribute to poorer health outcomes, with people’s diets influenced from an early age.

Together, all of these circumstances can result in various adverse health outcomes, including overweight and obesity, diabetes, failure to thrive in children, dental health and kidney disease.

Research from 2014–15 showed an association between dietary behaviour and other socioeconomic and health characteristics. For example, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples aged 15 and older who were employed were more likely than those who were unemployed to report adequate fruit intake (48% compared with 39%).

Evidence also suggests that people who experience poverty are more likely to maximise calories per dollar spent. Foods rich in fats, refined starches and sugars represent the lowest-cost options, with healthy options like lean meats, grains and fruits and vegetables more expensive.

Engaging and participating in traditional food management has been established as a contributing factor for improved social and emotional wellbeing. In addition to the benefits of consuming traditional foods, participating in the sharing of knowledge and traditional practices has been shown to have significant benefits for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities in urban settings, as well as rural and remote areas.

The Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) National strategy for food security in remote Indigenous communities aims to promote strategic action for Aboriginal health workers and GPs working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to improve food security. The strategy states that this effort requires ‘a multi-faceted and coordinated approach from all levels of government, [Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander] people and the non-government and private sectors to develop and implement effective and targeted actions.’

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report, A picture of overweight and obesity in Australia, shows that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and low socioeconomic populations are more likely to be overweight. As a result, the burden of diet-related chronic disease is high among people in these communities. This outcome can be traced back to issues with food security.

The National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (National Guide) suggests that interventions to improve food security include school-based nutrition education programs, structured workshops, cooking classes, demonstrations and community kitchens (including peer-to-peer education). Evidence suggests these programs can improve participants’ food security through developing cooking, shopping and budgeting skills, and can also reduce social isolation.

Initiatives such as fruit and vegetable delivery programs (eg the Good Tucker All Round program at Tharawal Aboriginal Corporation) and community-led programs that grow nutritious, sustainable produce for community members can also assist with improving food security.

NACCHO and @RACGP Aboriginal Health #Housing #Crisis #ClosetheGap #Socialdeterminants Overcrowding leads to poorer health outcomes for our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

 ” In the first of a series focusing on the coming third edition of the National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, newsGP examines the effects of overcrowding on health outcomes “

Download Brochure

National-Guide-prerelease-info-Flyer-2017

Many households in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are deemed overcrowded, a situation that can lead to a wide range of health problems.

Author of RACGP article Morgan Liotta

The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) and the RACGP’s National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (the National Guide) and the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research’s working paper, The scale and composition of Indigenous housing need, define overcrowded households as those that do not meet the following requirements:

  • No more than two persons per bedroom
  • Children aged <5 years of different sexes may reasonably share a bedroom
  • Children aged ≥5 years of opposite sex should have separate bedrooms
  • Children aged <18 years and the same sex may reasonably share a bedroom
  • Single household members aged >18 years should have a separate bedroom, as should parents or couples

The National Guide reveals that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families living in overcrowded circumstances are more susceptible to contracting infections through lack of hygiene from poor sanitation and close contact with others.

Added by NACCHOFor example, situations in which several people are sharing a single bathroom, and the bore water supply (on which many remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities depend) struggles to maintain appropriate levels, result in inadequate fresh water for basic cleaning. Another example is the ease with which an infection can spread via bed linen when several children are sharing a bedroom.

Chronic ear infections (eg otitis media), eye infections (eg trachoma), skin conditions (eg crusted scabies), gastroenteritis, respiratory infections (overcrowding has been identified as a risk factor for pneumococcal disease), and exacerbation of family violence and mental health issues are all potential outcomes from overcrowded environments.

In remote areas, overcrowded households (more than two children aged <5 years) are associated with a 2.4-fold increased risk of the youngest child having otitis media.

According to the Systematic review of existing evidence and primary care guidelines on the management of otitis media in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations, these high rates of infection could be prevented if overcrowding in Aboriginal communities was improved.

Overcrowding can also present as an environmental stressor for people living in such households, including from issues such as a lack of privacy, which can have an impact on mental health. Research from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that 14% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in remote areas cited overcrowding at home as this type of stressor, compared to 9% of those living in non-remote areas.

In addition, the Y health – Staying deadly: An Aboriginal youth focussed translational action research project addresses overcrowding as a potential factor when exploring issues of Aboriginal youth mental health.

However, other significant factors to recognise are that some houses need to accommodate for overcrowding due to extended family visits to deal with illness, mourning a death in the family, or sometimes for cultural reasons.

Various government strategies are in place to combat the negative impacts of overcrowding, including the National partnership agreement on remote Indigenous housing, funded by the Federal Government. This policy aims to assess the current state of poor housing conditions in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, as well as issues of housing shortage and homelessness.

These strategies are working towards improving housing conditions in rural and remote areas, a key part in helping to close the gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous Australians.

NACCHO and the RACGP’s National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, provides further information on overcrowding in the following chapters:

  • Hearing loss
  • Eye health
  • Respiratory health – Pneumococcal disease prevention
  • Mental health
  • The health of young people

How to access the National Guide:

The third edition of the National Guide will be available early 2018.

Free to download on the RACGP website and the NACCHO website:

www.racgp.org.au/national-guide/ and www.naccho.org.au

For further information, contact

RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health on 1800 000 251

or aboriginalhealth@racgp.org.au

 

NACCHO Aboriginal Health : Download The @RACGP Five steps towards excellent Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander healthcare

 

 ” The RACGP’s Five steps towards excellent Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander healthcare has been developed to provide a clear and concise summary of the programs and funding options available to support better care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients “

Download 1Five-steps-guide

Download 2. Five-steps-summary-sheet

RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health produced these resources to help give busy GPs and practice teams practical advice that builds on a foundation of cultural awareness.

The five steps:

1. Prepare and register for the Practice Incentives Program (PIP)
Register for the Indigenous Health PIP Incentive, staff complete accredited cultural awareness training, create a welcoming practice environment.

2. Identify your Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients
Asking whether someone identifies as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander can cause discomfort in practice staff; however, evidence shows that patients are comfortable when asked if the reasons can be explained.

If patients choose to identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander, they will do so when prompted.

3. Perform a health assessment
Performing a Medicare health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (MBS item 715) opens access to an additional five allied health visits.

Conducting a health assessment with a patient is an opportunity to build rapport and trust, and to develop an ongoing relationship. In addition to identifying physical health problems, discussing psychological and social functions is an effective approach to two-way communication with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.

4. Register patients with, or at risk of, a chronic disease for the Closing the Gap (CTG) Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) co-payment
Once a practice is registered for the Indigenous PIP (Step 1), it is able to register patients for the CTG PBS co-payment.

5. Use appropriate clinical guidelines and programs from the RACGP, Medicare and Primary Health Networks to enhance access and quality of care
The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO)/RACGP National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (the National guide) outlines the activities that are effective for preventive health.

More information is also available in the Australian Indigenous Health InfoNet Indigenous Health service eLearning program.

Other resources in the Five steps towards excellent Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander healthcare include a Five steps guide, which features detailed information to support GPs and practice teams to access programs and funding options; a quick reference guide to MBS items, policy and programs; and a Five steps visual poster, which is a condensed version of the five steps that can be displayed in a practice.

The RACGP will also be developing supplementary resources throughout 2018 to support GPs to implement the five steps in a way that achieves the best outcomes for practices and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.

First published in newsGP. Reproduced with permission of the RACGP.
 

 


THE AUTHOR: Mr Paul Hayes Paul is an experienced healthcare journalist and the editor of newsGP.

#NACCHOagm2017 @RACGP and NACCHO promote updated guide to preventive Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health assessments

RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health was on hand yesterday at the NACCHO (National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation) Annual Conference and AGM in Canberra to reinforce the partnership between the two organisations.

First published in newsGP. Reproduced with permission of the RACGP.

The National guide is currently being updated for its third edition

That partnership is demonstrated in the co-development of the National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (the National guide), which is currently being updated for its third edition.

The guide is designed as a practical resource for all health professionals delivering primary care to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people.

‘The National guide has been extremely well received by the Aboriginal community controlled health sector,’ Assoc Prof Sophia Couzos, NACCHO National guide Project Lead, told newsGP. ‘Everyone has been pleased with the issues addressed in the National guide.’

Those issues include lifestyle, child and young people’s health, rheumatic heart disease, eye health, hearing loss, sexual health and blood-borne viruses, antenatal care, mental health, cardiovascular disease prevention, chronic kidney disease, type 2 diabetes, prevention and early detection of cancer, and preventive health for older people.

‘The National guide is a clinical tool in terms of prevention, but also a tool for education for healthcare providers, Assoc Prof Couzos said. ‘People also plan to use it as a policy tool and to inform programs supporting best practice.’

According to Lauren Trask, NACCHO National Guide Implementation Officer, the publication remains consistent with the national policy platform around quality improvement initiatives.

‘The National guide provides linkage with the Quality Improvement module in the fifth edition of the RACGP’s Standards for general practices,’ she told newsGP. ‘It also has exciting and challenging new chapters, and reinforces the environmental and social determinants of health for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander patients.’

The updated third edition of the National guide is scheduled for release in February 2018, with RACGP and NACCHO hosting a series of workshops across the country to support its implementation.

 

 

 

Media Release RACGP and NACCHO: Leading healthcare bodies strengthen commitment to Close the Gap

Efforts to Close the Gap were bolstered today with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), formalising the partnership between the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO).

The MoU was signed by RACGP President Dr Frank R Jones and NACCHO Chairperson Mr Matthew Cooke at the launch of the RACGP’s Reconciliation Action Plan today at the RACGP National Office in Melbourne.

RACGP President, Dr Frank R Jones said the organisations have a proud history of partnership and have long advocated for increased awareness of barriers to quality healthcare faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.

“The signing of this MoU is particularly timely in the wake of last week’s Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage (OID) report which alarmingly revealed a widening gap in certain areas of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander wellbeing, most notably mental health,” said Dr Frank Jones.

“The signing of this document signifies our unwavering commitment to improve health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, ensuring these populations enjoy optimal physical, social, emotional and cultural wellbeing.

“The RACGP has worked in partnership with NACCHO for many years, lobbying for increased investment in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and collaborating on key resources for GPs to ensure they are equipped to provide clinically and culturally appropriate care.”

The MoU confirms the collaborative and respectful relationship between the two organisations, who will continue to work together advocating for appropriate resourcing of the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector and equality in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health.

NACCHO Chairperson Matthew Cooke said the signing of the MoU acknowledged the broad support for the Aboriginal community controlled health sector.

“Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services are making the biggest inroads in closing the persistent health gap between Aboriginal and other Australians,” Mr Cooke said.

“This MOU formalises the long term collaboration between our two organisations in advocating for better health for Aboriginal people.

“We look forward to continued work with the RACGP and continuing progress in improving the health of our communities.”

The RACGP and NACCHO are committed to achieving Close the Gap campaign goals and are proud of the daily work carried out by members to improve health outcomes for their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.