Northern Territory General Practice Education (NTGPE) has celebrated NAIDOC Week by today launching a new cultural education framework to help drive improvements in Aboriginal health across the Territory.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people comprise approximately 30 per cent of the population in the NT, and are one of the most disadvantaged populations in Australia.
Project Officer Dr Curtis Roman said NTGPE’s pioneering Cultural Education Framework 2022 supports the organisation’s aim for all its GP registrars to become culturally aware, competent and respectful.
“Cultural education is crucial in the NT, where we have the highest per capita Aboriginal population in Australia, along with much diversity,” Dr Roman said.
“Good cultural education prepares people who work with Aboriginal people to be more confident and to feel more empowered.
“This assists them to be more productive and to provide more cultural safety for Aboriginal people.”
GP registrars, GP supervisors and staff are given mandatory cultural education as part of their training with NTGPE.
All health professionals in the NT, whether working clinically or in health research or policy, will have direct contact with Aboriginal people, and this framework is designed to ensure that GPs are prepared and confident to work in this cross-cultural context.
The NTGPE Cultural Education Framework 2022 aims to improve Aboriginal health by:
- bridging cultural barriers to effective healthcare education and training in the NT
- attracting, retaining, and equipping GPs in the NT to deliver health care to Aboriginal people
- assisting health services and practitioners to be culturally safe.
“Good cultural education empowers health professionals to be flexible and resourceful rather than embarking on a search for ‘the’ cultural response to every cross-cultural situation,” said Dr Roman.
“This approach is much more productive and beneficial, and can be applied across diverse situations.
“When organisations commit to cultural education, they are making a genuine commitment to Aboriginal Territorians.”