Enhancing the health conditions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities is an age-old challenge. Despite the fact that there have been achievements in some health care sectors such as remarkable reduction in the high frequency of child mortality since the year 1970. But the overall improvement has been inconsistent and slow. The disparity between other Australians and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders is still high and has not been progressively decreased. A noteworthy percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are young individuals and there is a further challenge to conduct services and programs being competent to carry on with the impending demands of a growing population. If considerable strategies are not implemented immediately, there are great threats that the health status of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities could deteriorate. I truly believe that several changes are needed to decrease health inequality and as a health care professional it is my duty to do so.
The deprived health condition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populaces is familiar information. Substantial discriminations exist among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and non-Indigenous Australians, predominantly in association to communicable diseases and life expectancy (Kong and Ward 2015). I want to proceed with some health care strategies which can be effective for reducing the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians is aims at key areas to attain highly responsive and effective health care structure. It will emphasis on community driven health care service area and social and emotional well-being. It is evident that high degrees of sexually transmitted diseases and comparatively higher frequency of HIV are prevalent among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Thus, a highly effective strategy is needed to reduce the rate of STDs. Tobacco and alcohol abuse is also an alarming problem among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (Li and McDermott 2015). My health care strategy will also target the increased prevalence of alcohol and tobacco abuse.
My strategy is to conduct a health promotion program which will involve the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members. The main target of this health promotion program to raise awareness among these indigenous communities about STDs and addiction. Inadequate health knowledge is the main difficulty among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and is associated with deprived health consequences (Hengel et al. 2014). Persons lacking health literacy fails to meet necessary health requirements which are essential for maintaining mental and physical well-being (Richardson and Stanbrook 2015). My health promotion program will give a clear guidance and resources about STDs and methods to prevent them. this health promotion program will also deal with the addiction problems by raising awareness.
For the success of my health care program a culturally safe health promotion is significant. From my perspectives, cultural safe programs are vital in improving individual approval and therefore promote more actual and effective care towards the independence of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. Imposing personal cultural views by any healthcare professional can be detrimental for the patient (Purnell 2014). As described by Hunt et al. (2015), a culturally safe health care program must embrace planned strategies and amenity delivery actions, documented measures to confirm cultural safety across all activities and service at all levels, courses to monitor, detection and appreciation of existing and emerging social and legal necessities of Indigenous communities. I totally agree with Hunt et al. (2015) and want to incorporate his recommendations in my health care program. A health promotion program titled the Stanford Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSM) concerning three Aboriginal community of Queensland incorporated indigenous cultures and traditions, maintained conventional means of cultural communication, assisted participation and leadership of the Indigenous people in their program. These steps played a vital role in the accomplishment of this program within each community, ultimately enhanced its efficiency, satisfactoriness, and sustainability (Barnett and Kendall 2011). Another aim of my health promotion program is to raise awareness among the fellow practitioners. This program will include administration committee fellows, all staff members, and volunteers. After the end of this program, I want to conduct client satisfactory surveys which will document the feedbacks from the patients and their family members.
Connecting local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, families and communities with the program is a great challenge to me. These people do not open themselves easily in front of the health professionals. For many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, it is difficult to approach healthcare professionals due to the humiliation associated with the STDs. Eighty percent of STDs among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are residing in isolated and very remote areas due to the shortage of amenities and edification. Language is also a big barrier for this health promotion program. Conducting sexual health service programs and campaigns can be challenging in remote Aboriginal populations (Hengel et al. 2014). To overcome all of this challenges and barriers a self-determination of the patients and their family is essential. Self-determination and will make them understand that they can exercise the same rights as all citizen and they should get the fundamental health benefits. I want to raise awareness among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities about STDs so that their decision-making power will be improved. Self-determination requires programs and resources that can contribution in rebuilding their own decision-making abilities (Richardson and Stanbrook 2015).
My health promotion program and strategies need the involvement of some important stakeholders for its success. This program cannot be accomplished without the collaboration between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and non-indigenous Australians. For this health promotion to be successful, the residents of Australia need to put the past between indigenous and non-indigenous inhabitants behind and collaborate as equivalents (Wise et al. 2012). This collaboration will help to close the wellbeing and life expectation gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous Australians (Demaio et al. 2012 and Humanrights.gov.au, 2016)). The focus of my program will be in the arrangement in the framework of raising STD awareness in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and to reduce health discrimination. Next aim of my program is to raise awareness about drug and alcohol abuse among the young indigenous population. It will be joined by a wide range of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous stakeholders, along with Australian Governmental and legislative body.
The irregular circulation of health services and lack of health promotion programs mainly in the countryside and remote zones, and absence of free, youth-oriented and culturally safe health facilities all together impact on the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations. My strategy is to address the identified barriers to access by confirming that they are culturally applicable, unrestricted, approachable and are available at accessible times. This program will also have the capacity to deliver concealment and program arrangements. Patient satisfactory surveys will be conducted to maintain a connection with them and make avail more health services for these people. I will make sure that my health promotion program will be culturally safe from every aspect. I hope that this program will help me to build self-determination and closing the gap. STDs are a major intimidation to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. By raising awareness about STDs I hope I will be able to decrease the rate of infection and associated mortality to some extent.
Barnett, L. and Kendall, E., 2011. Culturally appropriate methods for enhancing the participation of Aboriginal Australians in health-promoting programs. Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 22(1), pp.27-32.
Demaio, A., Drysdale, M. and De Courten, M., 2012. Appropriate health promotion for Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities: crucial for closing the gap. Global health promotion, 19(2), pp.58-62.
Hengel, B., Guy, R., Garton, L., Ward, J., Rumbold, A., Taylor-Thomson, D., Silver, B., McGregor, S., Dyda, A., Knox, J. and Kaldor, J., 2014. Barriers and facilitators of sexually transmissible infection testing in remote Australian Aboriginal communities: results from the Sexually Transmitted Infections in Remote Communities, Improved and Enhanced Primary Health Care (STRIVE) Study. Sexual health, 12(1), pp.4-12.
Humanrights.gov.au. (2016). Close the Gap: Indigenous Health Campaign | Australian Human Rights Commission.
Hunt, L., Ramjan, L., McDonald, G., Koch, J., Baird, D. and Salamonson, Y., 2015. Nursing students' perspectives of the health and healthcare issues of Australian Indigenous people. Nurse education today, 35(3), pp.461-467.
Kong, M. and Ward, J., 2015. HIV and sexually transmissible infections among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: summary of the latest surveillance data. Fire in the belly: the call to action on HIV from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, p.19.
Li, M. and McDermott, R., 2015. Smoking, poor nutrition, and sexually transmitted infections associated with pelvic inflammatory disease in remote North Queensland Indigenous communities, 1998-2005. BMC women's health, 15(1), p.1.
Purnell, L.D., 2014. Guide to culturally competent health care. FA Davis.
Richardson, L. and Stanbrook, M.B., 2015. Caring for Aboriginal patients requires trust and respect, not courtrooms. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 187(3), pp.162-162.
Wise, M., Massi, L., Rose, M., Nancarrow, H., Conigrave, K., Bauman, A. and Hearn, S., 2012. Developing and implementing a state-wide Aboriginal health promotion program: the process and factors influencing successful delivery. Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 23(1), pp.25-29.
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