Better Together plan launched at Metro North Caboolture NAIDOC Week Celebration
Australia’s largest public health service has launched its plan to improve Indigenous health outcomes at a community NAIDOC celebration today.
Over 1,500 people attended the annual Metro North Caboolture Family Fun Day gathering to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The Metro North Hospital and Health Service Better Together Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2019-2022 was unveiled as part of the event.
The plan outlines the Close the Gap agenda commitments and actions with Caboolture the ideal location to launch the plan with the highest Indigenous population in the catchment of over 6,000 people.
Metro North Acting Chief Executive Jackie Hanson told guests that patients, community groups and partnership organisations helped contribute to the plan.
“We received over 600 pieces of individual feedback for our plan and held a consultation event on National Close the Gap day for our valued Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander elders, staff and patients,” Ms Hanson said.
“I am proud to unveil a plan that will guide our organisation over the next three years to achieve meaningful change and ensure all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people accessing Metro North receive high quality person centred care that is culturally responsive, empowers self-care and choice, and is designed to improve health and wellbeing.”
The plan includes a focus on four clinical priority areas of a strong start to life for maternal and child health; reducing the burden of disease in relation to cancer screening; crisis and complex care for support and advocacy within the emergency department and living well, living longer to trial new approaches to improving connectivity to care.
Metro North Board Member Bonny Barry said in addition to the plan individual hospital level Reconciliation Action Plans (RAP) are well underway.
“Metro North is proud to be leading the way with our RAP launched last year by Community and Oral Health,” Ms Barry said.
“The ‘Innovate’ RAP has made some positive gains already, including forming relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Traditional Owners, Elders and community groups, increased supplier diversity for Indigenous owned businesses and improved cultural capacity of staff delivering care to the Indigenous community.
“RAP working committees have since been established at The Prince Charles Hospital, Redcliffe and Caboolture Hospitals and the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital.”
Guests enjoyed learning about the story behind the naming of the plan, inspired by artwork created by Aboriginal artist Elaine Chambers-Hegarty.
The design focuses on the Moreton Bay region and highlights the positive outcomes the plan will bring to the health and wellbeing of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
To view the plan visit https://metronorth.health.qld.gov.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/close-gap-plan.pdf