Cultural Security Project

This project is a priority for Aboriginal people because at the core of access to health services is how well a service can develop, monitor and sustain culturally appropriate and secure services for its clients.

It has been overwhelming reported that Aboriginal people still lag behind the rest of the Australian population in terms of access to effective health services. With the lack of appropriate service, then the health status of Aboriginal Australians is ill affected.

Lieutenant General John Sanderson, a Western Australian government ‘Special Advisor on Aboriginal affairs’ (2007) described Aboriginal health as “third world” in comparison to the majority population. More specifically, Aboriginal people are more exposed to risk factors which impact their health including smoking, poor diet, increased alcohol consumption, violence and overcrowding (Statistics 2008) than non-Aboriginal Australians. These precursors can to equate to continual long term ill health, morbidity, hospitalisation and early mortality (Statistics 2008).

This project will highlight the ways in which the capacity of a health system will improve Aboriginal health and wellbeing by enhanced: 1. cultural security planning, implementation and evaluation and (2) models of best practice in cultural security in health services for Aboriginal people in which cultural security is integral to definitions of quality of care.

It is a primary outcome of this project to gather information about the status of cultural security at a major urban Hospital. A secondary outcome is to provide an audit tool that examines cultural security in a primary health care service.

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