AMA 2017 Report Card on Indigenous Health (Otitis media focus)

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population is reported to suffer the highest rates of otitis media in the world. This unacceptably high prevalance has been known for at least 60 years.

The 2017 Report Card on Indigenous Health identifies chronic otitis media as a 'missing piece of the puzzle for Indigenous disadvantage' and calls for an end to the preventable scourge on the health of Indigenous Australians.

Otis media is a build up of fluid in the middle ear cavity, which can become infected. While the condition lasts, mild or moderate hearing loss is experienced. Otitis media is very common in children and for most non-Indigenous children, is readily treated. But for many Indigenous people, otitis media is not adequately treated. It persists in chronic forms over months and years.

This Report Card calls for a national, systematic approach to closing the gap in the rates of chronic otitis media between Indigenous and non-Indigenous infants and children in Australia, and a response to the lasting, disabling effects and social impacts of chronic otitis media in the Indigenous adult population.

2017 Report Card on Indigenous Health

Press release.

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