A $750,000 investment by the Morrison Government for the Spinifex Health Service will improve health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the Goldfields, says Federal Member for O’Connor Rick Wilson.
The funding boost is part of a $35 million investment in 42 key research projects to address avoidable indigenous deafness, ending avoidable indigenous blindness, and helping to eradicate chronic kidney disease.
This includes a $19.785 million investment from 2019-20 to 2021-22 for 33 grants under Round One of the Indigenous Australians Health Programme Emerging Priorities grant opportunity.
Paupiyala Tjarutja Aboriginal Corporation has successfully received $750,000 for the Spinifex Health Service administration project.
“The successful projects will work to address chronic disease prevention, early intervention and the treatment and management of diseases such as diabetes, cancer, renal disease and mental health,” Mr Wilson said.
“Grants were also provided for projects to address early childhood development and to assist with workforce development and continuous quality improvement of primary care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.
“Our Government is dedicated to improving health outcomes for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and maintains a long-standing and important commitment to achieving health equity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.”
The majority of the funding offered will support projects developed by the Aboriginal community controlled health sector, with some funding also to be provided for projects being undertaken by universities and other primary care organisations.
As part of the funding, the Government will invest $14.44 million from the first grant round of the Indigenous Health Research Fund (IHRF).
This funding supports research into several key Indigenous health issues including improving adolescent mental health, ending avoidable deafness and blindness, and improving outcomes for those living with chronic kidney disease.
The projects will identify what will contribute to successful healthcare delivery in Indigenous populations and what barriers exist.
They will also involve developing and implementing a targeted and culturally appropriate support package including guidelines, toolkits and training programs, as well as conducting trials of potentially ground-breaking and life-saving new treatments.
Backed by the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF), the IHRF will invest $160 million over 10 years (2019-20 to 2028-29) in health and medical research that can make a difference to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people suffering debilitating diseases.
The IHRF will mobilise health and medical research for the prevention of disease and promotion of health and social equity.
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led research, designed to deliver community benefit, will inform and transform the way the health system responds to the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
A further Emerging Priorities grant opportunity will be opened later in 2020.
The two grant rounds build on the Morrison Government’s $35 million, three-year investment in the Telethon Kids Institute, to lead a national consortium to accelerate one of four existing Strep A vaccine candidates into a clinical trial, working with researchers around Australia and the world.
Additionally, in the 2019-20 Budget, mental health funding was boosted nationally by $740.6 million, with $509 million going to initiatives aimed at addressing youth and Indigenous mental health and suicide prevention.