Urban health professionals working with health services in the NT to help close the gap

The Remote Area Health Corps (RAHC) has reached its 3000th placement in a remote Indigenous community in the Northern Territory (NT). The milestone was marked last night at Parliament House with the Minister for Health, the Hon Sussan Ley MP, presenting a certificate to Sue Tuck, a Registered Nurse from Deniliquin, New South Wales. Ms Tuck completed her third placement in 12 months, and RAHC’s 3000th placement, at Pintupi Homelands Health Service in Kintore in Central Australia.

RAHC was established in 2008 and is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health under the Indigenous Australians’ Health Programme: Stronger Futures Northern Territory to “address persistent challenges to accessing primary healthcare services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait people in the Northern Territory”.

Philip Roberts, RAHC General Manager, said: “We have been successful in encouraging dedicated and skilled health professionals like Sue to be part of the effort to close the gap in Indigenous health outcomes in the NT by providing support and training to assist them make the successful transition to remote practice.

“RAHC supports health professionals in a number of innovative ways such as providing a suite of free online eLearning modules, cultural and clinical orientation before the placement and side-by- side support for new-to-remote health professionals to work with them to make a smooth transition.”

The RAHC program has a 75% repeat rate of urban-based health professionals returning to undertake additional placements. RAHC health professionals have contributed an equivalent of 276 years of service in the NT.

Minister for Health Sussan Ley said the Abbott Government had committed $6.1 million in 2014-15 to the Remote Area Health Corps (RAHC).

“The work of the Remote Area Health Corps in the Northern Territory has improved access to quality health services for Indigenous people living in remote communities,” Ms Ley said.

“We are committed to closing the gap and to making long-term improvements in Indigenous health through improved access to health services.

The RAHC program is currently funded until 30 June 2015. 

Wednesday, 25 February 2015