Hi, my name is Sandy Barber I am an Indigenous woman from Dja Dja Wurrung and Yorta Yorta Tribes North/North west Victoria, I am an Indigenous Health Project officer working alongside the Eastern Melbourne PHN Sector Capacity team and the Integrated Team Care Activity (ITC) providers in the Eastern Melbourne PHN region in a program to assist General Practice Doctors, Practice Managers, Practice Nurses and administration staff to improve engagement with the Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander population.
ITC provides the opportunity for PHNs to develop flexible approaches to improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s access to high quality, culturally appropriate health care, including care coordination services. It allows PHNs to develop innovative approaches that best meet local needs through the commissioning process.
The aims of the ITC Program are to:
- contribute to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with chronic health conditions through access to care coordination, multidisciplinary care, and support for self-management; and
- improve access to culturally appropriate mainstream primary care services (including but not limited to general practice, allied health and specialists) for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
The objectives are to:
- contribute to better treatment and management of chronic conditions for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people enrolled on the program;
- improve access to appropriate health care through care coordination and provision of supplementary services for eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with chronic disease;
- foster collaboration and support between the mainstream primary care and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health sector
- improve the capacity of mainstream primary care services to deliver culturally appropriate services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people; and
- increase the uptake of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander specific Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) items, including Health Assessments for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and follow up items.
To reach these aims and objectives, it’s within my role to assist you and your practice in understanding
- Identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients (Asking the question)
- Assist you to better understand the PIP (Practice Incentive Program & IHI (Indigenous Health Incentive)
- Closing The Gap scripts and its benefits to you and the Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander patient
- 715 Assessment
- ITC program referral pathway and information about the program and the support they can offer
- Direct you to any further Cultural awareness training on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives on health and wellbeing
If you would like assistance with any of the above topics please don’t hesitate to contact me at:
Aboriginal Health Team
Ngarrang Gulinj-al Boordup
Email : Sandy.Barber@each.com.au
Phone: 0417 334 823
Further information on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and general practice can be found on the Health Pathways website.