2008 AMA Indigenous Health Report Card - "Ending the Cycle of Vulnerability: The Health of Indigenous Children"
This Report Card brings together the most recent available data and information about the health of Indigenous Australian children. The AMA recommends that access to Indigenous specific child and maternal services needs to be significantly improved, along with improvements to living environment conditions and enhanced capacity-building in Indigenous communities. This Report Card includes a number of Good News Stories about relevant projects or initiatives that are having a significant impact on Indigenous people’s health.
The AMA released its 2008 Report Card Ending the Cycle of Vulnerability: The Health of Indigenous Children on the 27th of November 2008 at Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service in Canberra.
In the 2008 Report Card, the AMA describes the significant gaps in health that exist between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children in Australia. The Report Card concludes that addressing the Indigenous child health gap is not just a matter of child-specific health checks and follow-up interventions. It is a long-term matter of comprehensively addressing the broader contextual factors and intergenerational health influences in Indigenous children’s lives. This cannot be achieved without the engagement and participation of Indigenous communities and Indigenous health organisations in the development of health policy and programs.
In the 2008 Report Card the AMA calls for:
- The establishment of a national network of Aboriginal community-controlled primary health care services specifically for Indigenous mothers and children.
- The establishment of culturally appropriate services addressing mental health and social and emotional well-being to respond to the mental health needs of Indigenous children and carers.
- Development of the Indigenous health and medical workforce and development of strategies to maximize the engagement of the mainstream medical and health workforce.
- A national audit of the living environment conditions to measure housing conditions, access to clean water, sanitation facilities and the conditions of safe and healthy living.
- Federal Government coordination of national improvements in data management regarding Indigenous identification and health status.
The Good News and Best Practice insert includes case studies of successful local health initiatives that have been developed and sustained by Indigenous people in their local communities.
Published: 27 Nov 2008