The Assistant Minister for Health, Senator Fiona Nash, has welcomed the signing of a Statement of Intent aimed at closing the gap in health outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.
Signed on Close the Gap Day, the Statement of Intent sees Australia’s peak body representing allied health professionals, Allied Health Professions Australia (AHPA) join together with Indigenous Allied Health Australia (IAHA).
The new partnership will focus on joint strategies to close the gap in Indigenous health and encourage more Indigenous people to take up a career in allied health.
“Allied health professionals work in diverse settings, including hospitals, rehabilitation centres, community health centres and long-term aged care facilities, and are a key provider of health care alongside doctors and nurses,” Senator Nash said.
“Growing our Indigenous health workforce is a key part of closing the gap in Indigenous health disadvantage and I’m pleased the Statement of Intent will seek to address this issue.
“The IAHA estimates that of the 120,000 allied health professionals, less than two per cent are indigenous Australians – making partnerships such as this all the more important.”
National Close the Gap Day highlights the need to improve health outcomes for Indigenous Australians. It is estimated that more than 1000 community events will be held across the country in support of Close the Gap Day today.