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Improving Indigenous health through education

Michael B Hart, Michael J Moore and Martin Laverty
Med J Aust 2017; 207 (1): 11-12. || doi: 10.5694/mja17.00319

Better education may close the life expectancy gap by up to 12 years

In an inquiry into Indigenous health in 1979, the House Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs noted: “When innumerable reports on the poor state of Aboriginal health are released there are expressions of shock or surprise and outraged cries for immediate action. However, the reports appear to have no real impact and the appalling state of Aboriginal health is soon forgotten until another report is released”.1

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  • Michael B Hart1,2
  • Michael J Moore3
  • Martin Laverty4

  • 1 Social Determinants of Health Alliance, Canberra, ACT
  • 2 Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Service, Newman, WA
  • 3 Public Health Association of Australia, Canberra, ACT
  • 4 Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, Canberra, ACT


Acknowledgements: 

We thank the contributions, advice and cultural oversight provided by Dennis McDermott and Tom Calma.

Competing interests:

M Bret Hart is the current chair of the Social Determinants of Health Alliance (SDOHA). Michael Moore and Martin Laverty were the previous chairs of SDOHA.

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  • 2. Webb-Pullman M, Vorrath S, Nethercote J. The 25 reports on Aboriginal Australia that line government bookshelves. Melbourne: Crikey; 25 May 2006. https://www.crikey.com.au/2006/05/25/the-25-reports-on-aboriginal-australia-that-line-government-bookshelves (accessed Apr 2017).
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  • 12. Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Closing the Gap Prime Minister’s report 2017. Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia; 2017. http://closingthegap.pmc.gov.au/sites/default/files/ctg-report-2017.pdf (accessed Apr 2017).
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