Calls to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Practitioners

This week saw the release of the latest research conducted jointly by the Australian National University and NATSIHWA which highlighted the need to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners workforces. 
 
NATSIHWA CEO Karl Briscoe said “We know the importance of our workforce in delivering culturally safe care. They can reduce communication gaps, improve follow-up practices, help with medical advice and provide cultural education”.
 
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners are critical workforce to improving Indigenous health outcomes. We are seeing small overall increase in total numbers, but this is not keeping up with population growth. There is a loss in younger age groups entering or staying in the profession. We are calling to action to increase numbers of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners and to learn from what is working in states where there has been growth (NSW and QLD).
 
The findings will be published in Australian New Zealand Journal of Public Health on 29 January.

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