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NHMRC funds new Centre for Research Excellence in Indigenous Health

Date posted: 27 October 2016

The National Health and Medical Research Council has funded an allied health initiative between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders, health services, clinicians and researchers across Australia. The initiative will organise workforce development opportunities and new alcohol treatment and prevention programs.

Federal Health Minister, the Hon. Sussan Ley, announced the Federal Government initiative. With this funding, a new Centre for Research Excellence in Indigenous Health will be established, which aims to unite the skills and experience of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal leaders in the health, teaching, research and policy sectors.

One of the primary focuses of the Centre will be alcohol prevention. Led by the University of Sydney’s Professor Kate Conigrave, the Centre will expand programs that have shown promise in reducing risky drinking, improving mental health and increasing empowerment in Aboriginal people. It will further develop and evaluate pilot programs that have shown promise in urban and regional settings in New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia.

Professor Conigrave said that 'Critically, this program is founded on strong partnerships with Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, communities and health professionals across Australia. It represents an exciting opportunity that unites leading Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal researchers, clinicians and policy experts across the country. This field has been characterised by piecemeal efforts to address alcohol-related problems but clearly needs a broad range of integrated actions.'

Aboriginal Co-Chief Investigator of the new centre, Scott Wilson, said that the initiative 'is an ambitious program that will draw together a broad range of responses. These include assistance for unhealthy drinking in Aboriginal Community Controlled health services; treatment and aftercare for alcohol dependence in other settings; grass-roots community-led prevention; and improving research methods.'

Many Aboriginal services and communities have worked towards reducing alcohol-related harms. This centre aims to offer an opportunity to draw together cultural and community expertise to grow the evidence base for what works.

Source: University of Sydney

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Last updated: 27 October 2016
 
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Australia's National Research Centre on AOD Workforce Development National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre National Drug Research Institute