Articles on Indigenous health

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Australia sees higher rates of disability in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population than the non-Indigenous population. From shutterstock.com

Why Aboriginal voices need to be front and centre in the disability Royal Commission

The experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians must be at the forefront of the Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability.
Australia’s first Aboriginal Brain Injury Coordinator, Rebecca Clinch, with brain injury survivor Justin Kickett. Edith Cowan University

Aboriginal Australians want care after brain injury. But it must consider their cultural needs

The absence of Indigenous Australians in rehabilitation services has created the belief they don't want therapy. The reality is they want services which better meet their cultural needs.
Being separated from their children affects the mental well-being of Aboriginal mothers in prison. ChrisMilesProductions/Shutterstock

Aboriginal mothers are incarcerated at alarming rates – and their mental and physical health suffers

Aboriginal mothers in prison feel intergenerational trauma and the forced removal of their children are the most significant factors impacting their health and well-being.
Detail from a poster designed by the Indigenous creative agency Iscariot Media, which highlights the problem of cyberbullying. Author provided

We need to do more about cyberbullying against Indigenous Australians

Online abuse has been in the spotlight during this election campaign and AFL season. But researchers and policy-makers alike need to do more to understand cyberbullying against Indigenous Australians.
The antibiotics commonly used to treat school sores, a skin infection affecting thousands of Aboriginal kids, are out of stock. Terry Trewin/AAP

Antibiotic shortages are putting Aboriginal kids at risk

Almost half of Aboriginal kids living remotely will have a school sore at any one time. But there aren't enough of the right antibiotics to treat them.
Over the past five years, one in every four children who died by suicide in Australia was Indigenous. Shutterstock

Why are we losing so many Indigenous children to suicide?

Poverty and social exclusion play a big role in Indigenous child suicide. The causes are complex but we know enough to act now to reduce the number of deaths in our communities.
The same patterns have emerged over the last decade of reaching for the same targets. from shutterstock.com

Four lessons from 11 years of Closing the Gap reports

Some targets seem easier to meet than others, while some are just plain unreliable. Here are four things we've learnt from the last decade of Closing the Gap policy.
A history of dispossession and transgenerational trauma underlie the day-to-day struggles of Indigenous people. from shutterstock.com

It’s despair, not depression, that’s responsible for Indigenous suicide

A diagnosis of mental illness is only one in a number of risk factors for suicide. And for Indigenous Australians, a history of dispossession and disempowerment plays a much bigger role.
Morningstar Mercredi, pictured on November 16, 2018, woke up from a surgery at 14 and discovered her developing baby was gone. What remained was an incision from her panty line to her belly button, cut without her permission. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Canada’s shameful history of sterilizing Indigenous women

Recent revelations of the coerced sterilization of Indigenous women in Canada are part of a long, complex and disturbing history -- in which feminism became a fight to keep one's own children.
People with disability living in remote communities may receive money for supports, but that doesn’t mean there’s anywhere to purchase them. from shutterstock.com

Indigenous people with disability have a double disadvantage and the NDIS can’t handle that

The NDIS has good intentions, but its design doesn't seem to support the unique needs of Indigenous people living with a disability, particularly if they're living in remote communities.
Balgo artists: Miriam Baadjo (b. 1957),Tossie Baadjo (b. 1958), Jane Gimme (b. 1958), Gracie Mosquito (b. 1955), Helen Nagomara (b. 1953), Ann Frances Nowee (b. 1964) and Imelda Yukenbarri (b. 1954). Bush medicine: a collaborative work by women from Wirrimanu (Balgo), 2018, acrylic on linen, 120×180cm, MHM2018.32, © Warlayirti Artists; Medical History Museum

The art of healing: five medicinal plants used by Aboriginal Australians

At least half the food eaten by the first Australians came from plants. And in terms of medicines, many different parts of plants were used.
It isn’t helpful to jump to conclusions about child sexual abuse. Raj Rabidas/Shutterstock

An STI epidemic in young people does not signal sexual abuse

Young people in remote Aboriginal communities have high rates of STIs for a number of reasons, including inconsistent condom use and poor access to health services.
If youths with brain impairment had been identified and supported early, their entry into the justice system could have been avoided entirely. from shutterstock.com

Almost every young person in WA detention has a severe brain impairment

New research assessing young people in WA detention found 89% were severely impaired in at least one area of brain function. One in three had fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD).

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