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An innovative ante/post-natal service for young Indigenous women in Western Australia has won the team excellence award at the 2013 HESTA primary health care awards. The service, called Moort boodjari mia (MBM), aims to assists Indigenous women under 20 years of age with their pregnancy and parenting issues. It is run by the North Metropolitan Health Service in the city of Perth.
MBM representative, Alison Gibson, said the service provides comprehensive care to young women and their families. 'MBM's multi-disciplinary team works together to deliver comprehensive patient care which includes a mixture of home visits, clinic visits and transport to hospital appointments,' she said.
'The service has a unique complement of staff, with each case managed by a midwife, Aboriginal Health Officer and Aboriginal Liaison Grandmother. Each team member brings valuable skills and knowledge that directly benefit the client, her baby and other family members. The program has been successful in reducing incidences of smoking and drinking alcohol during pregnancy, and increasing the average birth weight to a healthy 3.1 kilograms,' Ms Gibson said.
'Our staff understand the differing needs and culturally appropriate ways of working with the Aboriginal community and continually work on developing a service that meets these specific needs. We also work with and share our knowledge with other services to help improve health outcomes for the broader Aboriginal community,' she said.
HESTA CEO, Anne-Marie Corboy, congratulated the winners of each category. 'The judges received nominations from around the country and had a difficult decision choosing 13 outstanding finalists. The winners are a credit to their organisations and are all contributing to improved community health outcomes, often in areas of high need,' Ms Corboy said.
The HESTA primary health care awards recognise the dedication and professionalism of those working in primary health care. This year's winners were announced at an awards dinner in Melbourne, Victoria on 6 June 2013.
Source: HESTA Primary Health Care Awards
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