Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce program

Australians are among the healthiest people in the world. Yet Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people live, on average, ten years less than other Australians.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce plays an important role in changing this. Health Workforce Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce program is implementing a range of projects to develop and support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers. This will ultimately lead to better health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

These projects have been developed in response to 27 recommendations identified in the Growing Our Future report which looked at the challenges facing the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce and potential future actions. The Growing Our Future report is available to download here.

Projects

The project is supporting more registered training organisations meet relevant accreditation standards determined by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia.

Health Workforce Australia is supporting more than 100 health workers to become accredited trainers. This means Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers will have better access to training, and get their professional qualification sooner.

The project is supporting benchmarking of training for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners and assessing the risks associated with broadening the qualifications recognised for registration.

This multimedia resource is helping all healthcare professionals understand the unique role of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers, and how they support the health workforce as a whole.

The training package is establishing competency standards and qualifications for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers so they are better prepared to work in their communities.

Health Workforce Australia's (HWA) Growing Our Future report recommended assisting the existing workforce to meet the minimum qualification requirements for registration as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health practitioner via recognition of prior learning and/or further education.

The health curriculum framework is helping develop cultural understanding, build interprofessional relationships and increase awareness of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health worker role.

The clinical log book has been used extensively across Australia by registered training organisations as a competency-based learning and assessment tool for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers, including those re-entering the workforce.

Health Workforce Australia is supporting more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workers to qualify and register as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health practitioner.