Indigenous Public Health Issues

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The Public Health issue that will be discussed in this essay is Indigenous health. Throughout this essay, a closing the gap report by the COAG reform council will be analysed as it examines the policies and strategies that have been implemented to deal with this serious public health issue, that is Indigenous health. Other important parts of the public health issue, such as cost effectiveness (economic), efficiency and impact on social equity will all be discussed as well.
This is the fourth report done by the council in regards to the National Indigenous Reform Agreement. It is an independent assessment of the progress of Australian governments against the Closing the Gap targets on education, employment and health. The council’s main aim
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COAG consists of the Prime Minister, State Premiers, Territory Chief Ministers and the President of the Australian Local Government Association. It is a long-term action plan that aims to construct itself on the foundation of respect and unity provided by the 2008 National Apology to the Indigenous people of Australia. It recognises that to improve the lives and opportunities of the Indigenous Australians, extreme and sustained effort is required from all levels of government, as well as individuals, communities, and the private and not for profit sectors. COAG hopes this policy will help eradicate the disadvantages faced by Indigenous Australians in terms of life expectancy, child mortality, education and employment (COAG,…show more content…
Also social and environmental factors play a part. These include psychosocial (racism & stress), education (literacy & numeracy), economic (income) and physical environment (poor and overcrowded housing) (Donato & Segal, 2013). This socio-economic disadvantage causes higher burden of disease and is due to largely preventable diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, mental disorders, chronic respiratory disease, obesity and cancer. Risk factors contributing most to the higher burden of disease in indigenous people are tobacco, high body mass, physical inactivity, high blood cholesterol, and alcohol (COAG Reform council, 2013). For instance obesity increases the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and contributes significantly to the total burden of disease gap between indigenous and non-indigenous people. That is one of the reasons why Indigenous Australians die at much younger ages, have more disabilities and experience reduced quality of life because of ill health compared to non-indigenous Australians (Donato & Segal,

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