Dec 08
Aboriginal Health Workers converge for annual forum

​More than 130 people converged on Mudgee recently for Western NSW Local Health District's annual Aboriginal Health Workforce Forum.

Aboriginal Health Workers, members of the Local Health District's executive leadership team and senior managers participated in the two day event.

Representatives from Bila Muuji Aboriginal Health Services Incorporated, Western NSW Primary Health Network, NSW Cancer Institute and the University of Sydney also attended.

Associate Director, Aboriginal Health Transition, David Meharg said the forum was a success, living up to this year's theme 'Achieving Meaningful Gains in Aboriginal Health Together'.

“The forum was an opportunity to connect frontline Aboriginal staff with senior leaders in our organisation to discuss the future strategic direction of the Local Health District," Mr Meharg said.

“A wide range of innovative projects that are being led by the Health District's Aboriginal health workforce were showcased to participants on the day, and it is quite amazing to see all the fantastic work happening right across our organisation."

“The day was also a great opportunity for everyone to share insights into key projects and strategies that are being led by our partners that our Aboriginal workforce can link into."

David also said that a number of key initiatives were launched at this year's forum.

“Western NSW Local Health District and Bila Muuji launched the 'Western NSW Aboriginal Health Partnership 2016 – 2020' with the official signing of the commitment by the Local Health District's Chief Executive and the Bila Muuji Chairperson," Mr Meharg said.

“The commitment is our pledge to build respectful working relationships between the two organisations in order to work collaboratively towards closing the Aboriginal health gap and improving health outcomes for Aboriginal people in our region."

“Early next year we will also see the development of Local Aboriginal Health Action Plans between member Aboriginal Medical Services and Western NSW Local Health District sites that will focus on local needs and opportunities."

New Aboriginal merchandise was also unveiled at the forum, with the design adapted from the artwork of Jasmine Sarin titled 'Healthy Living, Healthy Choices'.

“The procurement of the Aboriginal health merchandise links with our Aboriginal corporate branding initiative which focuses on creating culturally welcoming physical environments for our patients," Mr Meharg said.

“The new shirts, scarves and ties will provide our Aboriginal staff members with a workplace identity when undertaking health promotion activities."

Media enquiries: Brendan Williams, Media Manager, Western NSW Local Health District via brendan.williams@health.nsw.gov.au