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Abbott reshuffles Ministry: Dutton to Immigration, Ley to Health, Morrison to Social Services

Prime Minister Tony Abbott today announced a reshuffle of his Ministry, that has seen Peter Dutton move from Health to Immigration and replaced by Sussan Ley, former Assistant Minister for Education, who becomes the second woman in Cabinet (alongside Foreign Minister Julie Bishop). His statement announcing the moves said: The Hon Peter Dutton MP will [...]

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“I’m a Health Worker, student & am homeless, by choice”: insight into the lives of Darwin’s street people.

The post below offers a unique insight into the lives of street people in Darwin, where ‘long grassers’ are often regarded as a blight on the community, denied access to toilets, showers and other facilities. The author, who wishes to remain anonymous, wants to encourage better responses to street people and particularly urge academics to [...]

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World Medical Association urges climate change action as PM Tony Abbott gets a timely Xmas gift

The World Medical Association is urging governments to commit to an ambitious and binding climate agreement to protect public health, after last week’s COP20 negotiations in Lima, Peru concluded with limited progress toward a deal in 2015. See the full statement below, which commits to “ensuring that the medical community is actively engaged in advocacy [...]

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Tony Abbott’s Medicare “deforms” or How to Trick Senators 1.01

The Federal Government’s co-payments Plan B will add another layer of co-payment complexity to the Medicare system that neither doctors nor patients fully understand now. That raises a whole range of issues around unintended consequences, particularly for patients but also for our system, which has prompted this appeal to the Senate to learn from what’s [...]

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Federation reform: issues raised in the Health Issues Paper

The Federal Government last week released, with little fanfare, the Issues Paper on Health to inform the White Paper on the Reform of the Federation. See the media release from Prime Minister Tony Abbott and this snapshot of the “threshold questions” to be addressed. In response, the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association today released a [...]

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Indigenous Australians can take pride in disability policy gains

John Gilroy and Nicholas Biddle write: The International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPWD), December 3, is important for commemorating the successes and efforts of the disability rights movement. The theme this year is Sustainable Development. Along with other Indigenous peoples worldwide, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have much to celebrate. At the same time, [...]

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SBS’s First Contact is the real ‘festering sore’ of the nation

Thanks to The Conversation for permission to share this reflection on the SBS/Blackfella Films production First Contact by Dr Chelsea Bond, Senior Lecturer in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit at the University of Queensland. Bond is an Aboriginal (Munanjahli) and South Sea Islander Australian and has extensive experience in Indigenous health, as a health [...]

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10 tips for using social media to promote health: reflections from Fertility Week

Thanks to Rebecca Zosel, Health Promotion Advisor at the Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority (VARTA) for the reflections in the post below on engaging with social media during the 2014 Fertility Week. For more insights and tips about the role of social media in health promotion, check out Colin Cowell’s post at the Power to Persuade [...]

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“Do not turn our people into fringe dwellers once again”: Fitzroy Crossing groups on threats to close WA remote communities

Indigenous organisations of the Fitzroy Valley in Western Australia have issued a powerful statement against the threat last week by State Premier Colin Barnett to close “100 or more” remote Indigenous communities. They warn it could be “as devastating” as the eviction of Aboriginal people from pastoral stations in the 1960s, in the wake of [...]

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2014 Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage report: important gains, many risks, big gaps

The 2014 Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage (OID) report has been released today. Regarded as the most comprehensive report on Indigenous wellbeing in Australia. it’s the sixth in a series that emerged out of the final report of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation in 2000. See the snapshot of its key points here (pic below) and in this [...]

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