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New chronic disease portal provides quick access for workforce

Friday, 01 July 2016

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Edith Cowan University's Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet has launched a new online portal for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander chronic disease workforce. The portal is part of an ongoing commitment by the HealthInfoNet to keep the sector informed about health conditions affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The portal provides information about chronic conditions that are a problem for all Australians, but particularly Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including: heart disease, diabetes, respiratory (lung) diseases, cancers and kidney disease. It also covers physical activity and nutrition, as these factors influence many chronic conditions.

HealthInfoNet Director, Professor Neil Drew, said 'Our new portal will save busy health practitioners considerable time by providing them with up-to-date information and resources about chronic disease'.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health performance framework 2014 report noted that chronic disease accounts for two-thirds of the health gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and non-Indigenous Australians. The majority (70%) of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander deaths in 2008-12 were due to chronic diseases (e.g. circulatory disease, cancer, diabetes, respiratory disease and kidney disease).

Information has been chosen for the portal because it is written in plain language and has practical application in daily work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients with chronic disease or disease risk. The portal provides access to health promotion resources, health practitioner tools and information about programs that promote healthy lifestyles and chronic disease management for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It also highlights workforce opportunities for chronic disease workers, including job vacancies, events, training and funding.

There are five Yarning places dedicated to specific chronic condition health topics which allow those working in each area to share ideas and information and are free to join.

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