Implementation Plan Advisory Group (IPAG) - Communiqué - 2 December 2016

Page last updated: 20 January 2017

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The Implementation Plan Advisory Group (IPAG) held its second meeting on 2 December 2016 at Parliament House, Canberra in relation to the Implementation Plan for the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023.

Members noted progress to date against the Implementation Plan, including the following recent achievements against the 2018 deliverables:

  • Increased immunisation rates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children;
  • The release of the Cultural Respect Framework  that gives guidance to mainstream health system providers on providing culturally competent health service delivery;
  • Continuation of the National Health and Medical Research Council’s commitment to allocate more than five per cent of funding to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, and the establishment of a Centre of Research Excellence to build Indigenous research capacity; and
  • The imminent release of the National Framework for Health Services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children and Families, which will inform the delivery of high quality, evidence based child and family health services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Members discussed a data development strategy that is being progressed by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the Department of Health to ensure that progress against all of the Implementation Plan goals and actions can be measured. Members agreed to provide advice on focus areas for the data development strategy in advance of the next meeting.

Members endorsed a consultation strategy to inform the development of the next iteration of the Implementation Plan, which is due to be released in 2018. Consultation forums will be held in each jurisdiction, along with an online submission process, in early 2017. Details on the consultation processes will be made available in the near future.

Following the IPAG meeting, the Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP, addressed IPAG prior to a roundtable discussion on the social and cultural determinants of health that was convened by Pat Turner from the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation. The roundtable marks the start of IPAG’s consideration of social and cultural determinants of health, which will inform the next iteration of the Implementation Plan, with the discussion focusing on innovative, cross-portfolio approaches that improve health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

For further information, please contact the IPAG.Secretariat@health.gov.au

Background

The IPAG has been established to review progress, assess action and identify emerging policy and strategic issues for the Implementation Plan, and provide advice to the Departments of Health and the Prime Minister and Cabinet. IPAG will play a key role in engaging across the sector to inform the development of the next iteration of the Implementation Plan.

Membership of IPAG includes representatives from:

  • The Department of Health;
  • The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet;
  • The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare;
  • The National Health Leadership Forum;
  • The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation;
  • Jurisdictional representatives from the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Standing Committee of AHMAC; and
  • Indigenous health experts with expertise in early childhood health, comprehensive primary health care and acute care.

The IPAG is co-chaired by Mr Richard Weston, Chair, National Health Leadership Forum, and Ms Bobbi Campbell, First Assistant Secretary, Indigenous Health Division, Department of Health.

IPAG held its first meeting on 16 September 2016, with members identifying priorities for the current and next iteration of the Implementation Plan. Members agreed the social and cultural determinants of health are a key priority for action in the development of the next iteration of the Implementation Plan. IPAG also identified systemic racism in the public hospital system and workforce planning as key priority areas, and requested the impacts of the NDIS rollout, Health Care Homes and Aged Care Reforms be further examined.

Implementation Plan

The Implementation Plan, launched in October 2015, outlines the actions to be taken by the Australian Government, the Aboriginal community controlled health sector, and other key stakeholders to give effect to the vision, principles, priorities and strategies of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-2023.

The Implementation Plan is being progressed in two stages. The second stage of the Implementation Plan (2018-2023) will include:

  • Development of Domain 7 – social and cultural determinants of health;
  • Increase engagement and involvement with other Australian Government agencies, state, territory and local governments, the Aboriginal community controlled health sector, the non-government sector and the corporate/private sector;
  • New challenges and priorities;
  • Emerging evidence and opportunities; and
  • Strategic responses on mental health, social and emotional wellbeing, suicide prevention and alcohol and other drug use.