10 year road map for Closing the Gap

ten year road map to close the gapMinister for Rural Health Fiona Nash has launched an Implementation Plan as a further commitment to Closing the Gap. The Implementation Plan is a ten-year road map: a strategy to better health for Indigenous children, Indigenous youth and Indigenous adults.

The Coalition decided to adopt and build on the 10 year National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan (2013-2023), with details actions and achievable goals, to ensure continuity. It includes 20 specific goals which will be used to measure outcomes in Indigenous health.

Minister Nash said that the implementation plan lays out goals in the areas of antenatal health, health checks, immunisation, smoking rates and diabetes. The Plan also lays down the changes needed to make the health system more comprehensive, culturally safe and effective for Indigenous Australians.

Following are some of the aims of the Implementation Plan for the next ten years:

  • Increasing the percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children aged 0-4 who have at least one health check a year from 23 to 69 per cent
  • Increasing the percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth who have never smoked from 77 to 91 per cent
  • Increasing percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children who are fully immunised by age 1 from 85 per cent to 88 per cent

The plan is a result of genuine partnership between the Government and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The Indigenous Australians’ Health Programme is investing $3.3 billion over four years to support the continued delivery of services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. $94 million investation to expand efforts through Better Start to Life; and $36.2 million will expand the Healthy for Life programme into a further 32 Aboriginal community controlled health organisations to better manage chronic disease.

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Image: Michael Coghlan – flickr

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