Early impressions of paediatric health in Alice Springs: trying to see beyond the gaps

Marcel D Zimmet
Med J Aust 2010; 192 (10): 606-607.

I was asked to review the article below, and found it a compelling read. Zimmet has clearly gone to central Australia with an open heart and mind, and has discovered an intriguing world previously not known to him. He ends his article with a gentle challenge to those of us who have the privilege to work in health care, to consider whether our current methods are best practice, and whether they are best suited to all who seek our help. Having read this article, I found myself with two unanswered questions. First, given that there have now been several generations of Aboriginal people advocating for improvement to the dire circumstances in Aboriginal health, how is it that our young colleagues are still so shocked when they come to our communities? What is it that we (older Aboriginal people) have failed to say to get the attention of our health care providers, and their teachers? Second, how can we see to it that we produce many more graduates of the quality of Zimmet, who see the world with fresh eyes, are not afraid to ask the obvious questions, and are bold enough to tell us all that the Emperor is indeed naked? I strongly recommend that Journal readers take the time to read this article, and spend a moment or two in reflection to examine their own souls, to see if they can rise to this young man’s challenge. Louis G Peachey, BMed, FACRRM, Foundation President, Australian Indigenous Doctors Association, Canberra, ACT.

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  • Marcel D Zimmet

  • Central Australia Remote Health, Northern Territory Government Department of Health and Families, Alice Springs, NT.



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