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Professor Ernest Hunter

Regional Psychiatrist
PO Box 6515
Cairns QLD, 4870
Tel: (07) 4080 3138


Ernest is an Adjunct Professor with James Cook University and a Regional Psychiatrist. Ernest is also an Australian medical graduate who trained in adult, child and cross-cultural psychiatry in the United States before returning to work in remote northern Australia.

Ernest became the inaugural Regional Psychiatrist with Queensland Health in 1992, providing clinical services to remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities of Cape York and the Torres Strait. He was the Foundation Professor of Public Health (Mental Health) with the North Queensland Clinical School of the University of Queensland based in Cairns, which subsequently became the North Queensland Health Equalities Promotion Unit. He returned to clinical practice with Queensland Health in 2001 but remains involved in a range of projects including suicide prevention and the use of technology and multimedia approaches for health promotion.

In 2001, Ernest initiated the introduction of health touchscreen technology, known as Hitnet, to improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health literacy. Hitnet provides touchscreen technologies in remote areas of Australia to deliver culturally targeted information in a creative, understandable and informative way.

In the 2010 Australia Day Honours list Ernest was awarded a Public Service Medal for outstanding public service to Queensland Health, particularly in the delivery of mental health initiatives in rural Queensland. 

Last updated: 5 June 2017
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