The aim of the Standing Strong Together award is to acknowledge partnerships between general practitioners (GPs) and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
In 2016, the Standing Strong Together award was awarded to Dr Jamie Fernando and the Glen Centre – Central Coast Drug and Alcohol Residential Rehabilitation. Dr Fernando is a Gamilaroi-Weilwan man with extensive experience as a GP in the Aboriginal community controlled health sector. The Glen Centre is an award-winning drug and alcohol rehabilitation service on the Central Coast of New South Wales (NSW). It is an Aboriginal community controlled health organisation, with a board of directors representing the Aboriginal community.
Dr Fernando and the Glen Centre worked together to establish a new medical clinic at the facility. The medical clinic employs a multifaceted approach that engages the centre’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients, reintroducing them to primary healthcare.
When patients leave the centre, the clinic facilitates their transition back to their local healthcare providers, which ensures continuity of care. The Glen Centre also coordinates a training program for GP registrars and university students. In partnership with a local general practice, the centre offers both part-time and full-time placements, providing valuable training in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander healthcare for future GPs.
For more information visit The Glen Centre Website
The National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Worker Association (NATSIHWA) was established in 2009 to promote the ongoing recognition of the vital and valued role a strong and professional Aboriginal health workforce play, in providing better health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
NATSIHWA held their national conference in Brisbane on 6–7 October 2016, which included an awards dinner. There were four awards presented to health workers who show outstanding dedication to their role.
The Young Warrior award was presented to Dorothea Budat Maymuru from Miwatj Health in Yolngu country, Arnhem Land.
The Health Worker Legend for 2016 was awarded to Patricia Lawford, a Senior Aboriginal Health Worker at Kimberley Renal Service.
Tharawal Aboriginal Corporation, based in Campbelltown, NSW, was recognised with the Health Service Legend award.
In recognition of influential development and support for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health worker profession, Bukulatjpi Mariyalawuy, also from Miwatj Health, was awarded the Individual Champion award.
The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) would like to congratulate all four award recipients, and the NATSIHWA for their work toward closing the gap in health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
The Australian Indigenous Doctors' Association (AIDA) is a not-for-profit professional association contributing to equitable health and life outcomes, and the cultural wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. AIDA’s ultimate goal is to reach population parity of Indigenous doctors, and to inform and support a culturally safe healthcare system.
The annual AIDA conference was held in Cairns on 14–16 September 2016. The theme of the conference was ‘a journey of strength and resilience’. RACGP Aboriginal andTorres Strait Islander Health were present at the conference and ran a booth that was visited by many delegates. The RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Manager and Medical Advisor presented a successful and well-attended workshop – ‘What does quality general practice look like?’ Faculty staff and members formed a group participating in the ‘Growing our fellows’ workshop that was also well supported.
There were social engagements – a banquet dinner and the gala dinner awards night– where two RACGP board members received awards. Associate Professor Brad Murphy was awarded the Indigenous Doctor of the Year award and Professor Jennifer Reath was awarded the Associate Member of the Year.
The Indigenous Doctor of the Year award is granted to an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander nominated member, who has made a significant contribution to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
The Associate Member of the Year award, is granted to a non-Indigenous member who has made a significant contribution to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
The RACGP is very proud of the accomplishments of both Professor Reath and Associate Professor Murphy and congratulate them on their recognition by AIDA. 2016 Indigenous Student of the Year, Mr Ian Lee and the 2016 New GP Fellows were also celebrated for their achievements.
RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health had the traditional ‘Have a yarn’ booth at GP16. The newly designed booth had more space to offer comfort and furnishing that encouraged people to come in and ‘have a yarn’. This year the booth was decorated to showcase both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander colours and artwork.
There were several faculty events at GP16 – the faculty board meeting held at the Western Australian (WA) faculty office, the Active Learning Module (ALM) ‘Can we do better than “I treat everyone the same”?’, and the annual faculty members meeting.
The RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health hosted six medical students from WA universities, providing one-day registration. Two student bursary winners received registration for the conference and tickets to all of the social events.
Local Cultural Educators Danny Ford and Marilyn Morgan, were invited to participate in the ALM, with Danny also performing the ‘Welcome to Country’ at the members meeting. Here Danny gave a presentation on a WA local hero, Mr Rob Riley (deceased). Also at the members meeting, winners of the Standing Strong Together award, the Glen Centre, represented by Joseph Coyte and Cheryl Bailey, gave a presentation about the Glenn Centre.
The joint faculty social event was a success. The team organised a special ‘Welcome to Country’ performance by Phil Wally-Stack and his dancers to officiate the event, which was enjoyed by all.
Every year the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health sponsors an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander medical student to attend the RACGP annual conference. This year two students were sponsored – Ms Danielle Dries and Mr Gary Sit.
Danielle Dries, a Kaurna woman, completed her first degree in physiotherapy at Charles Stuart University in 2011. Now she has her heart set on becoming a remote GP, utilising her soon-to-be-complete degree in medicine from the Australian National University.
Gary Sit, a Wiradjuri-Birpai man in his final year of studies at the University of Melbourne, sees general practice as an opportunity to strengthen and empower communities through public health and community development models.
Danielle and Gary attended GP16 in Perth, WA from 28 September – 1 October 2016 and enjoyed networking opportunities, presentations, the faculty member’s meeting, the joint-faculty social event and gala dinner. On 29 September, they were joined at the conference for the day by six local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander medical students – Corey Dalton, Bianca Howard, Kelly Langford, Monique Lucas, Billie Kickett-Morris and Belinda Pinskier. The faculty is proud to sponsor these future members of the health profession.
This online module aims to increase cultural awareness training of GPs, general practice staff, medical students and healthcare staff, thereby improving the delivery of healthcare to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients. This six hour active learning module (ALM):
The module has been developed by the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health and is accredited for 40 Category 1 QI&CPD points. It is available through gplearning at no additional cost for RACGP members. Non-members can undertake this module at a cost of $179. To enroll, please contact the gplearning team on 1800 284 789
The RACGP Library Service now provides a collated list of publications in a number of topics relevant to general practice medicine.
This is a member-only service that requires registration by emailing the library with your name and membership number. Follow the link to download Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health October 2016 articles.
The Australian Indigenous Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) Knowledge Centre has launched a new eBook about volatile substance use based on the 2016 review of volatile substance use among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The interactive electronic version is a tactile, sensory tool providing multiple ways to assist learning.
The eBook has been created for Apple devices and is free to download from iTunes and the AOD site. Users can read, listen, make notes and copy and paste content. Embedded in the eBook are short films and links to the original source of references.
This audit aims to use existing medical record software to identify the proportion of patients who have been recorded as being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin, and enable a review of the accuracy of these records.
The audit process will allow GPs to implement strategies to ensure that their practice routinely and effectively identifies Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients and consequently, gives GPs the opportunity to improve the provision of appropriately-targeted high-quality care for these patients.
This activity, which comes at no additional cost to members of the RACGP, has been developed by RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health and is eligible for 40 Category 1 QI&CPD points.
Enrolment in the audit is available via gplearning.
This audit aims to use existing medical record software to identify Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults with chronic kidney disease.
The audit process will allow GPs to select five patients, and develop and implement strategies to assist them and other patients to improve renal health and slow or prevent the progression to end-stage kidney disease, cardiovascular disease or stroke.
General Practice Training Tasmania (GPTT) is collaborating with Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre to run a unique two-day-camp cultural experience from 25 – 27 November 2016. This event is specifically designed for GPs and will provide unique insight into Aboriginal communities. Enjoy a cultural walk and a camp fire session with Aboriginal arts and craft in the beautiful Trawtha Makuminya and Circulars Marsh country. Here you will have the opportunity to discuss the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal communities and how you can contribute to closing the gap in life expectancy of Aboriginal patients.
As the event is free to all GPs, it presents an excellent opportunity for members interested in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health. Follow the links for the itinerary for the session and click here for registration. If you require any further information regarding this exciting event, please email the GPTT Events for further information.
The IMiA17 conference will be held in Sydney, NSW from Friday 24 to Sunday 26 March 2017, at the new International Conference Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney).
The conference brings together a wide range of local and international medical professionals who specialise in treating addiction. The preliminary program is now available.
Early bird registrations are now open with discounted registration fees available until 12 December 2016.
The biennial Pacific Region Indigenous Doctors Congress (PRIDoC) will be held at the University of Auckland, New Zealand from 27 November – 1 December 2016.
The PRIDoC will provide a culturally-safe environment for Indigenous doctors, medical students, health professionals, healthcare researchers and medical educators from the Pacific region to discuss ideas, action and evidence that is transforming Indigenous health in these areas.
The congress will include keynote speakers, plenary panels, student panels, short oral presentations on research and innovation, poster presentations (with prizes), social events and cultural exchanges.
Visit the PRIDoC website for more information on the event or click here to register now.
The Leaders in Indigenous Medical Education (LIME) Network will be holding its seventh biennial conference in Melbourne, Victoria from 4–7 April 2017. The theme for LIME VII is ‘The Future of Indigenous Health Education: Leadership, Collaboration, Curriculum’.
The conference is focused on encouraging:
The RACGP is a proud major sponsor of LIME VII.
Please click here to register for the event or please visit the LIME website for more information.
For your information, the members of the RACGP Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health team are:
Leeanne PenaNational Stakeholder Advisor
Dr Tim SeniorMedical Advisor
Kate FreemanProject Coordinator
David BromanProject and Policy OfficerSalome PintoMembership and Events Administrator
We are all here to help you. Please do not hesitate to contact us on 03 8699 0528 or email us, if you have any questions.