Centre for Remote Health
Tobias SpeareCathy Hargreaves, WACRH Pharmacy Academic and Tobias Speare, CRH Pharmacy Academic, at the NAPSA Congress in Perth, Pharmacy Academic at Centre for Remote Health recently attended National Australian Pharmacy Students’ Association (NAPSA) Congress in Perth.

NAPSA Congress is an annual week-long event that brings together undergraduate and postgraduate pharmacy students from eighteen universities nationwide for education, networking opportunities, a trade-show hall and social events. NAPSA Congress 2017 in Perth was reportedly one of the highest attendances with 320 delegates.

Toby presented a session promoting rural and remote pharmacy that was well received. It was encouraging that about half of the audience indicated that they were considering working in a rural/remote area!! A trade show followed with much interest in the Rural Pharmacy Support Network booth.

Toby and a colleague from the Western Australian Centre for Rural Health (WACRH) spoke with many students about placements and rural-remote pharmacy in general.

The Centre for Remote Health and Remote Primary Health Care Manuals sponsored a Rural-Remote Student Placement Competition. Matthew Vuksanovic (University of Western Australia) and Salifya Sichone (University of Queensland) each won a copy of the Medicines Book for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners and Health Workers.
Centre for Remote Health, Mental Health Academic, Tanja HirvonenCRH Mental Health Academic Tanja Hirvonen, recently featured in an SBS article where Australian Aboriginal psychologists talk about why Australia needs more Indigenous recruits to join the team. It comes after the Australian Psychological Society said sorry for their silence on the Stolen Generation.
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Toby SpeareIn a recent article published in the Australian Journal of Pharmacy, Centre for Remote Health Pharmacy Academic Tobias Speare outlines how you can encourage culturally safe and responsive practice in your pharmacy.

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Professor Tim Carey, Aboriginal Health Practitioner Co-ordinator, Iris Raye and Tanja Hirvonen at Milikapiti Health Clinic on Melville IslandCentre for Remote Health’s Professor Tim Carey and Tanja Hirvonen visited Tiwi Islands in December 2016 to meet with Aboriginal Health Practitioners and team leaders to discuss mental health/wellbeing and self–care learning needs.  

This forms part of research about whether the development of training for Aboriginal health Practitioners (AHP) is needed, to enhance the good work they are currently performing.  

The discussions confirmed that future training would provide significant benefits for the AHP workforce, in particular the remote AHP workforce.  The Centre for Remote Health is very interested in upskilling AHPS’s in Mental health and self-care as it is felt that this will also have great benefits in retaining this cohort and their longevity in Aboriginal Primary Heath care.  

This most recent trip was very encouraging and it is hoped that this is the beginning of enhancing relationships with the North of Australia.
Atoifi Adventist Hospital, Solomon IslandsTobias Speare, Pharmacy Academic at the Centre for Remote Health, visited the Atoifi Adventist Hospital (AAH) in remote Solomon Islands in October 2016 to assist in the establishment of medicines management processes. The trip to the Solomon Islands was very successful with the establishment of important partnerships, the development of a number of protocols around how medicines are managed in AAH including consultation with stakeholders, the redesign of the pharmacy and support for local pharmacy officer.

In addition Toby was able to provide guidance to members of the Atoifi Health Research Group who were presenting at an upcoming Pacific Nurses Forum , where the Atoifi Health Research Group was recognised as an extremely high performing organisation.
Professor John Wakerman, Associate Dean Flinders NT, Rosalie Schultz, CARPA chair and Professor Tim Carey, Director Centre for Remote Health with the original painting that appears on the CARPA Standard Treatment ManualThe original painting which has appeared on the front cover of the Central Australian Rural Practitioner’s Association (CARPA) Standard Treatment Manual since 1992, will soon be displayed at Centre for Remote Health where the team coordinating the revision and production of the manuals is based.

The artwork was commissioned by Dr Steve Skov, a District Medical Officer for the communities, and a member of the editorial committee for the first edition of the CARPA Manual along with Sabina Knight, Nick Williams and Penny Silwood. Kumantjai Tjampitjimpa Nolan a practising ngangkari, established artist and senior elder in the Papunya, Mt Liebig and Haast’s Bluff areas was asked to paint something of his choice for the first edition.

The painting tells the story of some women who are unwell from having their kurrunpa or 'soul' displaced and a ngangkari restoring their kurrunpa to them. The concept of kurrunpa is central to Western Desert people’s understanding of health and well-being. Disturbances in kurrunpa are very common causes of illness and reason for people to seek the assistance of a ngangkari. The painting also underscores the importance of recognizing that Aboriginal people maintain their traditional concepts and practices concerning health and illness as well as making use of the health clinic and the need for health care practitioners of a different paradigm to understand and respect those beliefs and work in with them.

The CARPA Standard Treatment Manual forms part of the Remote Primary Health Care Manuals suite, designed to support good clinical practice in primary health care in central, northern and remote Australia.

The suite of manuals includes:
  • CARPA Standard Treatment Manual, 6th edition
  • Minymaku Kutju Tjukurpa Women’s Business Manual, 5th edition
  • Clinical Procedures Manual for remote and rural practice, 3rd edition
  • Medicines Book for Aboriginal Health Workers, 3rd edition
  • Reference Book for the Remote Primary Health Care Manuals
The organisations that have collaborated to produce this suite of manuals are:
  • Central Australian Rural Practitioner’s Association Inc (CARPA)
  • CRANAplus Inc
  • Central Australian Aboriginal Congress Alukura Branch
  • Centre for Remote Health
Professors Sue Lenthall (award winner), Centre for Remote Health, Eileen Willis, Flinders University and Tim Carey, Centre for Remote HealthCentre for Remote Health’s Academic Leader, and longest serving staff member, Associate Professor Sue Lenthall has been awarded the Staff Award for Outstanding Contribution to Flinders University.

Sue has made an outstanding and sustained contribution to the crucially important discipline of Remote Health in both research and education since the late 1990s. Flinders University is a national and international leader in Remote Health and Sue has played a key role in Flinders achieving this well-deserved status.

Sue was instrumental in the development of the Remote Health education programs, has continued to lead their development and expansion and is a pioneer who is at the cutting edge of our understandings regarding the discipline of Remote Health and how remote services can be improved.
Paul Stephenson, Chair of CRANAplus Board and Adjunct Prof Sue Lenthall, Centre for Remote Health with the Gayle Woodford Memorial Scholarship at the CRANAplus Annual Conference in HobartThe Centre for Remote Health (CRH) was strongly represented at the CRANAplus Annual conference held in Hobart in October 2016.

CRH’s Jenny Longland, Associate Professor Sue Lenthall and Topic Coordinator Karen Collas responded to queries about what the Centre for Remote Health offers those looking to study in the area of Remote Indigenous Health.

Associate Professor Sue Lenthall launched the Gayle Woodford Memorial Scholarship on the opening night. A joint initiative between Centre for Remote Health and CRANAplus, this scholarship covers all course fees for the Graduate Certificate in Remote Health Practice, offered through Flinders University. This scholarship is open to registered nurses, Indigenous health practitioners, allied health practitioners and medical officers.

At the gala dinner, Pharmacotherapeutics lecturer Tobias Speare was awarded the Excellence in Education or Research in Remote Health.  Toby is a pharmacy academic at the Centre of Remote Health and has a keen interest in improving the quality use of medicines through education. One of his major achievements has been the development of an on-line course Pharmacotherapeutics for Remote Area Nurses.  

Toby strives to improve patient care through education around the judicious use of medications. Toby also had a poster presentation at the conference which was well received.

The following prizes were awarded to Centre for Remote Health’s, Remote Health Practice students:
  • Matthew Busbridge: 2016 Centre for Remote Health Prize for Outstanding Masters Graduate - Master of Remote & Indigenous Health  
  • Claire Alcorn: 2016 Healthcare Australia Prize for The Most Outstanding Student in the Topic - Remote Advanced Nursing Practice
  • Janet Hunter: 2016 Chronic Disease Prize for the Highest Achiever in the Topic - Chronic Disease in Remote & Indigenous Primary Health Care, Sponsored by Therapeutics Guidelines

The CRANAplus 2017 Conference will be held in Broome and staff from the Centre for Remote Health looks forward to catching up with you there.
Tobias SpeareCRH Pharmacy Academic, Toby Speare, Pharmacy Academic at the Centre for Remote Health, presented a Tabletop session titled Medicines Book, a communication tool at the recent Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory (AMSANT) Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) Collaborative in Alice Springs.

The collaborative was well attended with approximately 100 delegates from a variety of settings attending to share knowledge and experience on Continuing Quality Improvement; how health services bring CQI to life, engage the healthcare team and the community, and how they have used their data to implement improvements on the ground– all of which have the aim of improving health outcomes.

The tabletop session was well received raising the profile of Medicines Book for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners and Health Workers and the Centre for Remote Health’s role in its production.
Associate Professor Sheree Cairney - Photo courtesy TEDxStKilda Photographer Arun MuñozIn June 2016 in St Kilda, Victoria, Centre for Remote Health’s Associate Professor Sheree Cairney presented the Interplay project via a TEDx talk entitled ‘What Aboriginal knowledge can teach us about happiness’.

About the Interplay Project
For the past five years, the Interplay Project has been working with Aboriginal communities in remote Australia to represent their values and priorities in a wellbeing framework to guide policy. No easy feat, since Aboriginal knowledge is passed on through stories, and governments mainly speak the language of numbers. So, the Interplay researchers asked Aboriginal people about their values and goals in life, and worked out how these can be measured, in order to show their importance to government.

The result of this significant work is the Interplay Wellbeing Framework, which unites Aboriginal priorities of culture, empowerment and community with government priorities of education, employment and health.

The Framework, together with its data collection and visualisation tools, will be used to evaluate the impacts of wellbeing services and programs. It’s supported by a series of fascinating video documentaries that are not to be missed.

View Sheree's TEDx talk here

Learn more about the Interplay project
Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Miliwanga Sandy, Tammy Abbott, Sheree Cairney, Queenie and Maggie Jentian at the Banatjarl Women’s Garden near Katherine NT

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