Australian Healthcare Governance and the Cultural Safety and Security of Australia’s First Peoples: an annual critique

The phrase 'cultural safety and security' is a new aspect of health policy for Australia's First Peoples. It asks healthcare leaders and stewards to consider cultural safety not only when health professionals communicate with patients, but throughout every point and pathway of the healthcare system which, in so doing, could become culturally secure for Australia's First Peoples.

The question that stimulated this critique was: how are healthcare stewards meant to restructure their corporate governance so that their healthcare services are more culturally safe and secure for Australia's First Peoples?

Australian Healthcare Governance and the Cultural Safety and Security of Australia's First Peoples:an annual critique

Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention in NSW 2018-2023

The   Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention in NSW 2018-2023  was developed by the NSW Mental Health Commission and the NSW Ministry of Health in collaboration with people with lived experience of suicide attempts or losing a loved one to suicide, government agencies, mental health organisations and experts in suicide prevention.

The Framework identifies 5 priority action areas to reduce suicide in NSW:

  • Building individual and community resilience and wellbeing 
    To help people cope with tough times 
  • Strengthening the community response to suicide and suicidal behaviour
    To help people recognise those who are at risk of suicide, and take steps to support them
  • Supporting excellence in clinical services and care 
    To ensure people have access to appropriate, high quality clinical services and care, including broader supports and services 
  • Promoting a collaborative, coordinated and integrated approach 
    To reduce duplication and gaps
  • Innovating for a stronger evidence base 
    To know and use interventions that work to prevent suicide.  

About the Framework

Strategic Framework for Suiciode Prevention in NSW 2015-2023

Impact of FIFO work arrangements on the mental health and well-being of FIFO workers

This research from the Centre for Transformative Work Design brings together findings from a literature review with a comprehensive analysis of 59 FIFO studies, a survey of more than 3000 FIFO workers, in-depth interviews, surveys of FIFO partners and former FIFO workers, and a study that tracks how workers’ experiences vary across five points of a swing.

The findings across all of these sources of evidence are remarkably consistent. The research shows that, even when taking account of associated risk factors such as age and education, there is a greater risk of mental ill health amongst those workers operating under FIFO work arrangements. Indeed, one third of the 3000 FIFO workers surveyed experience high or very high levels of psychological distress, as measured on an extensively validated scale.

Crucially, poorer mental health and riskier alcohol and other drug use are risk factors for suicide, and both of these risk factors are present in the FIFO sample. In addition, FIFO workers have a demographic profile (gender, age, education, job role) in which suicide likelihood is greater, while also reporting feelings of loneliness, stigma, bullying and perceived lack of autonomy. Altogether, this pattern of findings suggests that FIFO workers are likely to be at greater risk of suicide.

Impact of FIFO work arrangements on the mental health and well-being of FIFO workers

How physical activity in Australian schools can help prevent depression in young people

Adolescence is a critical time for the development of mental health problems. In fact, depression is most likely to occur during adolescence and young adulthood. It’s the leading cause of disability in young people worldwide.

At least one‐quarter of young people will experience an episode of depression before 19 years of age. By year 9, students who have experienced a mental disorder are on average two years behind in academic achievement compared to those without a mental disorder.

See more at: https://theconversation.com/how-physical-activity-in-australian-schools-can-help-prevent-depression-in-young-people-107889

How much of eating disorders is in our DNA — and can we predict and prevent them?

Eating disorders are the third most common chronic illness in young women.
In recent years, researchers have made advances in detecting the genetic links, raising hopes for treatment and prevention.

Professor Tracey Wade is Matthew Flinders Distinguished Professor at Flinders University and associate investigator of the Australian Anorexia Nervosa Genetics Initiative (ANGI).
Elise Thompson spent six years living with anorexia.

Click on link for audio at: https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/lifematters/how-much-of-eating-disorders-is-in-our-dna-%E2%80%94-and-can-we-predict/10599966

Flying blind 2: Australian researchers and digital health

Australia has a wealth of health data resources, many of which are originally collected for other purposes such as administration or compliance. With appropriate access to these data and through data linkage, health researchers can generate new insights, uncover new trends and deepen our understanding of health and disease. In FB2, the aim is to understand how well these national data assets are used for research and where barriers may exist to more effective use.

This is the second of 3 reports by the Capital Markets Cooperative Research Centre on digital health in Australia.

Flying blind Vol. 2: Australian researchers and digital health

Flying blind Vol. 1: Australian consumers and digital health

The Obesity Epidemic in Australia

The Senate Select Committee into the Obesity Epidemic in Australia was established on 16 May 2018. The committee is composed of 7 Senators and was tasked with inquiring into and reporting on the following terms of reference:

  • The prevalence of overweight and obesity among children in Australia and changes in these rates over time;
  • The causes of the rise in overweight and obesity in Australia;
  • The short and long-term harm to health associated with obesity, particularly in children in Australia;
  • The short and long-term economic burden of obesity, particularly related to obesity in children in Australia;
  • The effectiveness of existing policies and programs introduced by Australian governments to improve diets and prevent childhood obesity;
  • Evidence-based measures and interventions to prevent and reverse childhood obesity, including experiences from overseas jurisdictions;
  • The role of the food industry in contributing to poor diets and childhood obesity in Australia; and
  • any other related matters.

This report is comprised of 10 chapters:

  • Chapter 1 provides some background information around the prevalence of obesity, and defines some key terms;
  • Chapter 2 discusses the importance of language and the high degree of stigma attached to the term 'obesity';
  • Chapter 3 examines strategic policy directions which could help tackling obesity;
  • Chapter 4 discusses the issue of food labelling;
  • Chapter 5 focuses on the critical role of reformulation to improve the availability of healthier products;
  • Chapter 6 examines the benefits of introducing a tax on sugary drinks;
  • Chapter 7 focuses on the issues associated with the marketing and advertising of discretionary foods;
  • Chapter 8 discusses the importance of education campaigns;
  • Chapter 9 looks at the benefits of health care interventions; and
  • Chapter 10 discusses promising multi-strategy prevention programs

The Obesity epidemic in Australia (Final Report)

Two new Australian hospital statistics reports: elective surgery and emergency department care [AIHW]

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released 2 new reports:

1. Elective surgery waiting times 2017-18: Australian hospital statistics Elective surgery waiting times 2017–18: Australian hospital statistics focuses on information about public hospital elective surgery waiting lists between 1 July 2017 and 30 June 2018. It presents information on overall activity, what elective surgery was provided and how long people waited for elective surgery.

2. Emergency department care 2017-18: Australian hospital statistics
Emergency department care 2017–18: Australian hospital statistics presents information on care provided in public hospital emergency departments between 1 July 2017 and 30 June 2018. It includes information on overall activity, nationally agreed performance indicators on waiting times for care, time spent in the ED, and other waiting times statistics. It also includes comparative information for the previous 4 reporting periods.

Media release: Waiting times for emergency department and elective surgery on the rise.