The Australian Medical Students' Association (AMSA) today released a report urging stakeholders in medical education to recognize the importance of Indigenous Health in medical school curricula.
The report, based on the proceedings of the Leaders in Indigenous Medical Education (LIME) conference in late 2007, outlines areas of key importance in Indigenous Health education.
AMSA President Michael Bonning said, "The long standing inequity between the health of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians is completely unacceptable."
"Improving Indigenous Health outcomes requires a medical workforce with a sound understanding of the issues involved in the provision of health care to Indigenous Australians.
"Producing medical graduates of this calibre requires Indigenous Health curricula which address the social, cultural and medical factors which contribute to the poor health of Indigenous Australians," Mr. Bonning said.
"To do this Indigenous Health curricula must be developed in consultation with Indigenous Australians, health professionals and students.
"The curriculum must also emphasise the potential for healthier Indigenous communities, rather than focusing too heavily on negative historical aspects of Aboriginal Australia.
"Furthermore, an understanding of Indigenous health must be fostered early and continue throughout a student's medical education," Mr. Bonning said.
"In this way, we can take steps towards closing the gap between the health of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.