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Australian Indigenous HealthBulletin Alcohol and other drugs knowledge centre Yarning Places

Website and resource set about the Indigenous Chronic Disease Package

Date posted: 29 April 2010

The Indigenous Chronic Disease Package is a vital part of the Australian Government's response to closing the gap in Indigenous health outcomes. The package aims to reduce of the burden of chronic disease among Indigenous people by providing better access to primary health care for Indigenous Australians.

The package provides:

  1. New funding for preventive health, focusing on Indigenous individuals, families and communities. This aspect of the package addresses risk factors for chronic disease.
  2. Support and funding for more coordinated and patient-focused primary health care for Indigenous people in both the Aboriginal community-controlled health sector and in mainstream general practice. This aspect of the package aims to improve the management and follow-up of chronic disease.
  3. An expanded Indigenous health workforce, with improved training and support.

The impact of chronic disease can be greatly reduced through changes in lifestyle and adoption of healthier life choices. The initiatives under the first measure of the package will provide Indigenous tobacco control activities, a new tobacco action workforce, an enhanced health promotion workforce, and healthy lifestyle programs.

Better detection, treatment and management of chronic diseases - and addressing barriers to accessing health care by Indigenous Australians - are also critical elements of the package. The second measure addresses these aspects by delivering a comprehensive approach to chronic disease management, seeking to encourage greater uptake of health assessments, and the provision of follow-up care in a coordinated, accessible and systematic manner.

The third measure includes workforce education, training and expansion. This will include: provision of scholarships; expanding the outreach and service capacity of Indigenous health services; engaging Divisions of General Practice to improve Indigenous access to mainstream primary care; attracting more people - Indigenous and non-Indigenous - to work in Indigenous health; and development of Indigenous-specific clinical practice and decision-support guidelines.

A new website provides the latest information about the Indigenous Chronic Disease Package. A brochure and fact-sheets have been developed to explain what is involved in the Indigenous Chronic Disease Package. All the fact-sheets can be downloaded from the website and printed, or a set of the fact sheets and the brochure can be ordered by contacting the Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health.


Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health (OATSIH)
Closing the Gap: Indigenous Chronic Disease Package
GPO Box 9848
Woden ACT 2601


Last updated: 21 October 2010
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