Disability in Australia: trends in prevalence, education, employment and community living (AIHW)

This bulletin provides an overview of disability trends over two decades, including trends in need for and receipt of assistance with specific basic activities of daily life. It also examines the trends in three major areas of people with a disability: education, employment and community living.

Call for proposals to improve aged and community care for Indigenous Australians

The Australian Government this week called for tenders to develop new workforce training to help Indigenous people working in aged and community care in the Northern Territory (NT).The project will give priority to 254 people in 49 remote communities as well as other Indigenous people working in Home and Community Care (HACC) throughout the NT.


Stand up and be counted (Indigenous community health)

This article describes how the Aboriginal community is missing out on funding and government support. It's main focus in within the Orange regional area.

National Health and Hospitals Reform Commission

The National Health & Hospitals Reform Commission called for submissions relating to reform of the Australian health system.
Many of the 500+ submissions received are now available from the website, along with the Commission's set of principles and a report on a framework for the next Australian Health Care Agreements.

Guide to management of hypertension 2008. (Heart Foundation)

The Heart Foundation has just released Guide to management of hypertension 2008.
The guidelines take a strong evidence-based approach, looking at the patient in a holistic and individual way. Doctors are instructed to take blood pressure with strict adherence to technique, using both arms and on several occasions and in different settings, before diagnosing hypertension.
Whether the patient should be medicated depends on their personal risk of a heart attack or stroke in the next five years, taking into account factors such as age, weight, family history and lifestyle. People with diabetes, existing heart or arterial disease, chronic kidney disease and a strong family history of high cholesterol or early heart problems should be on blood pressure medication even if their blood pressure readings are in the normal range.
Doctors are instructed to manage the lifestyle risk factors in all patients, whether or not their blood pressure is elevated.

Health and climate change

Climate change is having an impact on rural health. Rural and Remote Health has published a special Climate Change issue.

The future, our rural populations and climate change - a special issue
of Rural and Remote Health

Population health needs beyond ratifying the Kyoto Protocol: a look at
occupational deprivation

Control, uncertainty, and expectations for the future: a qualitative
study of the impact of drought on a rural Australian community

Malaria and pond-based rainwater harvesting linkages in the fringes of central highland Ethiopia

Responding to health impacts of climate change in the Australian desert

Also of interest on this topic, a W.A.Department of Health report Health impacts of climate change: Adaptation strategies for western Australia.

Strengthening Rural Communities Resource Kit

The Resource Kit is designed as a practical manual to assist in planning and undertaking a process of community renewal. It functions as a toolkit and reference manual for information about community sustainability and resilience, especially in rural and regional communities.

This package has been designed to support rural communities involved in managing change. The package is comprised of a theoretical framework, a how-to guide, community tools, templates and spreadsheets.

National survey of Adult Oral Health

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released 13 new reports : 8 presenting results from The National Survey of Adult Oral Health, four dental labour force reports, and one on the oral health of adult public dental patients:

The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 Australian Capital Territory (AIHW catalogue number DEN 175)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 New South Wales (AIHW catalogue number DEN 176)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 Northern Territory (AIHW catalogue number DEN 177)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 Queensland (AIHW catalogue number DEN 178)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 South Australia (AIHW catalogue number DEN 179)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 Tasmania (AIHW catalogue number DEN 180)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 Victoria (AIHW catalogue number DEN 181)
The National Survey of Adult Oral Health 2004-06 Western Australia (AIHW catalogue number DEN 182)

Dental labour force in Australia, 2005 (Internet Only)
Dental hygienist labour force in Australia, 2005 (Internet Only)
Dental therapist labour force in Australia, 2005 (Internet Only)
Dental prosthetist labour force in Australia, 2005 (Internet Only)
Oral health of adult public dental patients (Internet Only)

Identifying cost-effective interventions to reduce the burden of harm associated with alcohol misuse in Australia

This study provides a comprehensive analysis of the cost- effectiveness of interventions to reduce the burden of harm associated with alcohol misuse in Australia. The key findings suggest that all the prevention interventions modelled are more cost-effective in reducing alcohol-related harm than those that treat alcohol dependence.

Men's health services in GWAHS

A GWAHS Men's Health Network Group has been formed and has begun meeting in Dubbo.

The group aims to develop sustainable services to men within GWAHS.

Plans are being made to hold a workshop/forum in Dubbo on 16-10-08.

The group has five members : Andrew Whale, Paul Elbourne, Malcolm Stacy, Jim Herbert and Michael Barnes.

Mental health services in Australia 2005-06 (AIHW)

This the 9th AIHW annual report on the characteristics and activity of Australia's mental health services. Details from a wide range of data sources for the 2005-06 period are presented, together with changes over time. Information on mental health care provided by a range of services is detailed. Included are ambulatory services (such as community-based services, emergency departments, private psychiatrists, allied health professionals and general practitioners), hospital and residential services and other services (such as supported accommodation services) In addition, information is provided on mental health-related prescriptions and mental health resources such as facilities, workforce and expenditure. Comprehensive data is provided for each state and territory, and comparisons are made between population groups (including Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians). This report is a useful resource for health planners, policy makers, administrators, practitioners, researchers and others with an interest in mental health in Australia.
Also available from Can Print for $34.00 [AIHW Cat. No. HSE 56] (1300 889 873).
Media release

A picture of osteoporosis in Australia

At least 600,000 Australians are affected by osteoporosis, a disease that causes bones to become fragile and weak and increasing the risk of fracture, according to a report released today by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and Osteoporosis Australia. A silent disease, osteoporosis usually shows no signs or symptoms, and so often goes undiagnosed until a fracture occurs. Osteoporosis affects mostly women and men of middle-age and older. 1 in 2 women and 1 in 4 men over the age of 60 will suffer an osteoporotic fracture in their lifetime. These fractures may lead to chronic pain, activity restrictions, loss of independence and, sometimes, death,' said Dr Kuldeep Bhatia, Head of the AIHW's National Centre for Monitoring Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Conditions.

Media release

Close the gap: National Indigenous health equality targets

This report by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner and the Steering Committee for Indigenous Health Equality presents the outcomes from the National Indigenous Health Equality Summit, 18-20 March, 2008. The Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and Ageing, the Opposition Leader, as well as leaders of Indigenous health peak bodies and the mainstream health peak bodies signed a historic Close the Gap Statement of Intent in which they agreed to work in partnership to achieve equality in health status and life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians by the year 2030. As a part of this effort they agreed to ensuring that primary health care services and health infrastructure for Indigenous Australians were capable of bridging the gap in health standards by 2018. They also committed to measuring, monitoring, and reporting on their joint efforts in accordance with a range of supporting sub-targets and benchmarks. The Indigenous Health Equality Targets and the benchmarks contained here are presented to that end. These have been developed with a range of experts with experience in Indigenous health.