Croakey is taking a short break, and will be back on deck around April 27th. I thought it would be nice to leave you with a good news story about Indigenous health.

And thanks to Don Perlgut from the Rural Health Education Foundation for providing one. He writes:

“The Rural Health Education Foundation will break new ground on April 27, when it broadcasts its first educational television program to feature an all-Indigenous panel of experts.

Sharing Solutions: Indigenous Communities Tackling Chronic Disease will be a live interactive satellite television broadcast and simultaneous webcast about chronic disease in Indigenous communities.  This historic live event will take place at 8.00pm Sydney/Melbourne time, and is suitable for health and medical professionals as well as anyone with a serious interest in the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.

The hour-long program features filmed case studies and a panel discussion chaired by Indigenous ABC Radio National presenter Daniel Browning.

As the CEO of the Rural Health Education Foundation, I have been particularly proud of what my organisation has achieved in Indigenous health education in the past five years.  The Sharing Solutions program (and its upcoming June 2010 community version, called Live Strong) is part of our organisation’s extended “Strong” series that we produced in 2005 and 2006, with our programs Start Strong and Grow Strong, followed by (in 2008 and 2009) the programs Stay Strong and Strong and Deadly.

Taking a “life course” approach and commencing with infant and maternal health, each of the programs in the series explores successful community-based primary healthcare initiatives that emphasise prevention and health promotion.

Thus our attitude has been a “good news” one:  we present successful initiatives that are worthy of celebration and wider dissemination because of their ability to ameliorate Indigenous health disadvantage and to build community capacity and resilience.

Although we have primarily intended these programs for Australian health professionals to view through our satellite network, they have all been – or will soon be – broadcast by SBS TV, National Indigenous TV (NITV) and the Aurora Community Channel, thereby greatly expanding the audience.  We have also distributed many thousands of copies of these programs on DVD to Indigenous communities and to health and medical professionals working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health.

Croakey readers have a unique opportunity to participate in the Sharing Solutions live webcast, by going to the program’s website page and registering for the webcast (which is free).

I encourage you to join Daniel Browning and Dr Alex Brown (Indigenous diabetes expert, Alice Springs), Dr Sally Goold (Chairperson of the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses), Ms Leisa McCarthy (Darwin-based Indigenous nutritionist) and Dr Mark Wenitong (Cairns-based Aboriginal doctor) live at 8.00pm (AEST) on Tuesday 27 April.”

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