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Australian Department of Health and Ageing (2013)

National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023.

Canberra: Australian Department of Health and Ageing

This plan provides a long-term, evidence-based policy framework as part of the Council of Australian Governments' approach to Closing the gap in Indigenous disadvantage. The Australian Government worked in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community groups, and peak bodies to produce the plan.

The plan builds on the United nations declaration on the rights of Indigenous peoples, with a focus on:

  • policies and programs to improve Indigenous health
  • social and emotional wellbeing
  • resilience
  • promoting healthy behaviours
  • the centrality of culture for health and wellbeing
  • the right of people to be safe and empowered.

The plan at a glance includes:

  • the vision
  • principles
  • priorities
  • implementation.

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

Canuto KJ, Spagnoletti B, McDermott RA, Cargo M (2013)

Factors influencing attendance in a structured physical activity program for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in an urban setting: a mixed methods process evaluation.

International Journal for Equity in Health; 12: 11

Retrieved 24 January 2013 from

Doyle J, Firebrace B, Reilly R, Crumpen T, Rowley K (2013)

What makes us different? The role of Rumbalara Football and Netball Club in promoting Indigenous wellbeing.

Australian Community Psychologist; 25(2): 7-21


Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2012)

Risk factors contributing to chronic disease.

Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

Closing the Gap Clearinghouse (2012)

Healthy lifestyle programs for physical activity and nutrition.

Canberra: Closing the Gap Clearinghouse

This report assesses the evidence regarding the effectiveness of physical activity and nutrition intervention programs in reducing the incidence of chronic diseases in Indigenous communities. The report also describes the burden of lifestyle-related chronic diseases (diabetes, cardiovascular disease and chronic kidney disease) affecting Indigenous Australians and assesses strategies that have the potential to be affective.

The authors conclude from the evidence that healthy lifestyle programs can help to combat lifestyle-related chronic diseases. In particular, the programs that were found to be most effective were community-based projects that were initiated and managed by the communities in which they were run. Individual, family and group-based Indigenous healthy lifestyle projects were found to have positive effects in the short term (up to two years). It is not known whether these effects are sustained in the long term as few programs have both the resources and impetus to continue long term.

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation, Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (2012)

National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: second edition.

South Melbourne: Royal Australian College of General Practitioners

The National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: second edition provides an up-to-date, evidence-based national resource created to help all health professionals delivering primary health care to Indigenous people. The use of this guide may help to prevent disease, detect early and unrecognised disease, and promote health. This guide contains Indigenous-specific information on:

  • lifestyle factors (including smoking, overweight/obesity, physical activity, and alcohol)
  • health among specific populations (child health, adolescent health, and the health of older people)
  • chronic conditions (cardiovascular health, rheumatic heart disease, respiratory health, kidney health, diabetes, and cancer)
  • infections conditions (sexual health and bloodborne viruses)
  • other health conditions (oral health, eye health, ear health, and mental health).

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

Nilson C (2012)

A partnership with women and Binjareb leaders and elders.

Australian Nursing Journal; 20(6): 37

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

Stewart JM, Sanson-Fisher RW, Eades S, Fitzgerald M (2012)

The risk status, screening history and health concerns of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people attending an Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service.

Drug and Alcohol Review; 31(5): 617–624


Physical activity in rural Australia: fact sheet 26 (2011)

National Rural Health Alliance

Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council (2011)

Making links for healthy places: creating supportive environments for healthy eating and physical activity in Aboriginal and Torres strait islander communities in Queensland.

South Brisbane, QLD: Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council


Clinch D (2010)

Sporting opportunities for Aboriginal men in Melbourne's western suburbs.

Aboriginal and Islander Health Worker Journal; 34(4): 8-9

Ipsos-Eureka Social Research Institute, Winangali Pty Ltd (2010)

Developmental research to inform the local Indigenous community campaigns to promote better health.

Canberra: Department of Health and Ageing, Australia

Kiran A, Knights J (2010)

Traditional Indigenous games promoting physical activity and cultural connectedness in primary schools - cluster randomised control trial.

Health Promotion Journal of Australia; 21(2): 149-151

Scarr J, Roberts F (2010)

Remote pools 2010: a Royal Life Saving review of swimming pools in remote areas of the Northern Territory.

Canberra: Royal Life Saving NT


Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council of NSW (2009)

10 out of 10 deadly health stories - nutrition and physical activity.

Surry Hills, NSW: Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council of NSW

The 10 out of 10 deadly health stories - nutrition and physical activity booklet presents 10 successful nutrition and physical activity programs from NSW Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHSs). Programs ranged from cooking classes (Cooking classes for diabetes program) and teaching of life skills (Healthy lifestyle and weight management program), to community based activities (Fruit and vegetable program and market garden and Building healthy communities project). Despite the diversity in health topics they all shared several features, namely all were developed and tailored to meet needs identified by the Aboriginal communities in which the ACCHSs are located, and all have taken a 'holistic' approach.

The booklet was developed, produced and distributed by the Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council (AHMRC) of NSW and funding was provided by the Australian Department of Health and Ageing.

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

Alexander S (2009)

Cooking healthy and physical activity (CHAPA) project [March 2009 update].

The Chronicle; 12(1): 15

Bindon J, Headley EJ, Rissel C, Wade V (2009)

Improving the health and wellbeing of an urban Aboriginal men's group through a cycling promotion program.

Aboriginal and Islander Health Worker Journal; 33(4): 3-5

McCoy B (2009)

Indigenous men and chronic disease: can sport become more than a game and a preventative tool?.

Paper presented at the 13th Annual NT Chronic Diseases Network Conference "Prevention is the Best Medicine". 10-11 September 2009, Darwin

Thorpe S, Browne J (2009)

Closing the nutrition & physical activity gap in Victoria: Victorian Aboriginal nutrition & physical activity strategy.

Melbourne: Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experience significantly poorer health outcomes compared with other Australians. Chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes are responsible for the majority of the 'gap' in Indigenous life expectancy. Promoting good nutrition and physical activity is an essential component needed in order to 'Close the Gap' in life expectancy for Aboriginal people in Victoria. The Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO) is committed to improving nutrition and physical activity, and has developed a nutrition and physical activity strategy, subtitled 'Policy proposals for promoting healthy eating and physical activity among Indigenous Victorians 2009-2014'.

The strategy was developed after a comprehensive review of the Indigenous health promotion literature and a state-wide consultation process. It recommends strategies and actions that will build on current activities of VACCHO and its members. It also recommends strategies for consideration by the State Government in a coordinated approach to preventing chronic disease in Victorian Aboriginal communities.

The Aboriginal view of health is holistic, that is it incorporates a whole-of life approach to the physical, social and cultural wellbeing of the community. Therefore this strategy recognises that action by the health sector alone will not be sufficient to close the gap. It is intended that this Nutrition and Physical Activity Strategy is just one part of a coordinated, intersectoral response to overcoming Indigenous disadvantage which includes action across other key dimensions such as housing, employment and education.

This strategy identifies priorities within eight key action areas. These include:

  • workforce development;
  • improving food security;
  • developing healthy public policy;
  • delivering community based interventions;
  • ensuring equitable access to sport and recreation;
  • enhancing maternal and child nutrition;
  • health information and social marketing; and
  • improving the evidence base.

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

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