New guide for health professionals working to close the gap in health equality

Minister for Indigenous Health, Ken Wyatt AM, has launched the updated third edition of the National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The guide is a practical resource intended for all health professionals delivering primary healthcare to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

This edition:

  • equips primary healthcare providers and their teams with a comprehensive and concise set of recommendations for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients, with additional information about tailoring advice depending on risk and need
  • advises on activities that can help prevent disease, detect early and unrecognised disease, and promote health in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, while allowing for local and regional variations.
  • encourages clinicians to consider the social determinants of health when providing preventive healthcare
  • Includes the following new topics and features:
    • Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder
    • Preventing child maltreatment – supporting families to optimise child safety and wellbeing
    • Family abuse and violence
    • Prevention of lung cancer
    • Young person lifecycle summary wall chart

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

Closing the Gap Report 2018

The Closing the Gap framework was established in 2008 to address Indigenous disadvantage. 10 years on, the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have improved but more gains need to be made. It is clear that continued effort and action is required.

 

The Closing the Gap framework provides an annual national snapshot of progress made against the targets – and helps maintain our collective focus. While acknowledging this, it is important to recognise the success and achievements of many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, demonstrating that when equal opportunities are provided, disadvantage can be overcome.

 

The chapters in this report detail the progress made against the seven Closing the Gap targets – and focus on health, education, employment and community safety. They also showcase a range of Indigenous success stories – from inspiring individuals, to growing businesses and organisations making a positive difference to their communities.

 

Closing the Gap Report 2018.

Latest nutrition review confirms that community control is critical to improve the nutritional status of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

The Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet has published a new Review of nutrition among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It provides detailed information on food, diet and nutritional health among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and includes data for diet-related conditions, morbidity, mortality and burden of disease.

This review highlights the importance of nutrition promotion and the prevention of diet-related disease, and provides information on relevant programs, services, policies and strategies that help improve food supply, diet and nutritional health among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Media release

Review of nutrition among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

Review as PDF

NATSIHWA encourages using a ‘Scope of Practice’ for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners

The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers Association (NATSIHWA) has launched a supportive publication, the National Framework for Determining Scope of Practice for the Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Health Worker and Health Practitioner workforce. The Framework is designed to support Employers and Managers to work with their Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners to establish and define their scope of practice.

Ms Josslyn Tully, Chairperson of NATSIHWA said 'Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners are vital to improving the health of our peoples. The Framework for developing a Scope of Practice will better enable and support these employees in health services to reach their potential and utilise their skills and capabilities.

Senate inquiry to examine claims Indigenous suicide prevention funding misspent

Claims that funding for Indigenous suicide prevention programs is being spent on travel costs will be examined at Senate inquiry into rural and remote mental health services.

The inquiry was approved in the Senate on Monday with backing from Labor and the Greens and will look at the higher rates of suicide in rural Australia, quality of and access to mental health services in rural and remote Australia, shortfalls in the mental health workforce, and the use of technology and e-health services.

Rural areas have higher rates of suicide than capital cities and the rates of suicide for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is twice the non-Indigenous suicide rate.

Read more at: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/mar/19/senate-inquiry-to-examine-claims-indigenous-suicide-prevention-funding-misspent

Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia [AIHW]

The Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia web report presents the latest available data on new cases of type 1 diabetes, insulin-treated type 2 diabetes and insulin-treated gestational diabetes, and is part of the ongoing national reporting using the 2016 National (insulin-treated) Diabetes Register.

Data visualisations can be explored by age, sex, trends, population groups (Indigenous status, remoteness and socioeconomic groups), and geographic areas (state and territory, Primary Health Network and statistical area level 3) for type 1 diabetes and insulin-treated type 2 diabetes.

Download web report: Incidence of insulin-treated diabetes in Australia.

Health Translations : consumer health information for CALD populations.

The Victorian government Health Translations website enables health practitioners and those working with culturally and linguistically diverse communities to easily find translated health information.

* The Health Translations Directory provides direct links to reliable translated health resources produced in Australia. Organisations are responsible for registering their own multilingual resource on the Health Translations Directory.

* Over 14000 resources in over 100 languages and counting : New resources are regularly being added.

* Information can be found in a variety of ways. Search on topics, languages, or organisations.

* Health practitioners and organisations who work with culturally and linguistically diverse communities can use the site to find reliable translated health information, including a unique tool to help identify what language your client speaks.

Causes of death patterns and people's use of aged care

Nearly 245,000 older people (Indigenous Australians aged 50 and over, and non-Indigenous Australians aged 65 and over) died between July 2012 and June 2014. This report presents information on the cause of death patterns, and any aged care services they used before their death. This is the first time this analysis has been done in Australia.

The leading causes of death for these older Australians were Coronary heart disease (14% of deaths), Dementia (9%), Cerebrovascular disease (stroke) (8%), Lung cancer (5%), Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (5%) and Diabetes (3%).

These 6 conditions also account for more than 40% of the total burden of disease for older Australians.

4 in 5 (80%) of people in the study cohort had used an aged care program sometime before their death. Cause of death patterns differed somewhat between this group and people who had not used any aged care.

Coronary heart disease (14%) was the leading underlying cause of death for people who had used aged care, followed by Dementia (11%). For people who had not used aged care, Coronary heart disease was also the leading underlying cause of death (16%), but this was followed by Lung cancer (9%). Cancer-related causes were more common among those who had not used any aged care.

Causes of death patterns and people's use of aged care.

Friday mental health forum: Coping during drought

DROUGHT is not isolated to the northern parts of the country. In fact, the Hunter region has been severely affected of late, and other parts of NSW continue to dry off at a rapid rate.

During Friday’s Friday Forum at 12pm, The Land and the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program (RAMHP) are partnering to bring together the Rural Resilience Workers, RAMHP, NSW Farmers and a researcher to answer your questions, including the warning signs someone isn’t coping; how to prepare mentally for drought; signs of depression; practical ways to stay mentally healthy, and getting farmers to talk openly about mental health.

See more at: http://www.theland.com.au/story/5278798/friday-forum-coping-during-drier-times/?cs=5020

Cancer in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia data visualisations [AIHW]

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released a new web report with data visualisations:

Cancer in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia presents the latest available information on national population screening programs, cancer incidence, survival, prevalence and mortality for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, compared with non-Indigenous Australians. Information is available to explore by sex, age, state and territory, remoteness area and trend.

Latest findings:
* Between 2009 and 2013, an average of 1,279 new cancer cases were diagnosed each year in Indigenous Australians
* Between 2011 and 2015, there was an average of 551 cancer-related deaths each year for Indigenous Australians
* In 2007-2014, Indigenous Australians diagnosed with cancer had a 50% relative chance of surviving five years
* In 2009-2013, Indigenous Australians were 1.1 times as likely to be diagnosed with cancer as non-Indigenous Australians
* In 2011-2015, Indigenous Australians were 1.4 times as likely to die from cancer as non-Indigenous Australians
* In 2007-2014, Indigenous Australians had lower five-year relative survival compared with non-Indigenous Australians

Download web report: Cancer in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia.

Media release: Indigenous Australians more likely to be affected by cancers associated with preventable risk factors and are 1.4 times as likely to die from cancer as non-Indigenous Australians.