Sample History Paper on Role of collaboration between Indigenous Australian peoples and non-Indigenous Australian peoples for the improvement of health service provision

Sample History Paper on Role of collaboration between Indigenous Australian peoples and non-Indigenous Australian peoples for the improvement of health service provision

Australia was a British colony and before the settlement of the British in the country, there were native Australians who lived there. They totaled to a number of about 320,000 in population. The British colonizers brought about a lot of disruptions in the societies economically and in health with epidemics that caused immediate death to the natives. One of the reasons was that they lacked advanced medical knowledge and were still using herbs. This had a severe impact to a point that by the early 20th century there were approximately 80,000 indigenous people left (“Profile of Indigenous Australians – Australian Institute of Health and Welfare”, 2022). Health disparities have gone on since then until the present day where indigenous Australians are disadvantaged in all matters of health as compared to non-indigenous Australians, a phenomenon which has come to be known as “The Gap”. There have been attempts to collaborate with multiple agencies and indigenous Australians to allow for better and equal health service provision which puts into consideration their beliefs, customs, and practices.

Collaboration is defined as an act of putting together different teams to work towards one common goal. In nursing, collaboration is where different specialties are involved in managing and taking care of patients. This applies in the hospital setting and primary healthcare when where health services are taken to the community. Nursing and midwives in Australia are now calling for a change in the curriculum to include indigenous health practice. The nursing and midwife authorities need to nurture a collaborative environment for the development of an indigenous curriculum (Geia et al., 2020). Nurses and midwives should stand together to ensure teaching and learning materials include indigenous health syllabi.

With the scientific breakthroughs that have been witnessed, indigenous people die 17 years younger than non-indigenous people. Moreover, they present with illnesses that are experienced in other third-world countries. Social injustice and underrepresentation in professions affect their health and well-being. Social-cultural factors and lack of education is among the contributing factors to their lack of representation, especially in the nursing field. According to Turale and Miller, a study carried out revealed that collaboration with key stakeholders in the health sector and education sector leads to increased indigenous nursing students in schools. Although not all schools included indigenous content in the curriculum, most of them made an effort to ensure more indigenous students enrolled (2006). Indigenous Australians who leave in more remote locations have better health and well-being despite the high number of mortalities and morbidities. It was discovered that they have access to more traditional food and physical activities. A study group indicated that the well-being of indigenous Australians would be significantly improved when collaboration and partnerships with major stakeholders in the government and communities recognize and implement indigenous languages in the school and health systems (Schultz et al., 2018).

The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Health Plan 2021-2031 aims to prevent illnesses in the communities before they occur. This will be by providing necessary skills to the community on making healthy decisions and enabling them to navigate the health system. Hospitals and clinics will be introduced in the communities and trained indigenous health workers deployed to provide culturally acceptable services (2022). Furthermore, the plan emphasizes community-based and controlled health service provision. Aboriginal healthcare providers adhere to and understand cultural practices and therefore are more suited to serve in these community centers.

As we have seen, there is a need for multiagency and multidisciplinary collaboration to assist indigenous Australians to access proper healthcare. However, there are hindrances in the process that prevent timely and effective collaboration in the sector. In collaboration, various factors have to be considered while forming a team. The team size is a crucial factor because too large teams tend to have a breakdown of communication and inadequate understanding of abilities. When there is no communication, then the effectiveness of the team would be very low. Health service providers need to provide proper communication channels to the communities to allow for arrangements to be made by the community members to access the services (Nolan-Isles et al., 2021). When healthcare providers need to communicate instructions to their patients, some of the patients only understand their local language hence it is difficult to give proper instructions.

Racism and discrimination of aboriginal people by non-aboriginal people in the health system decreases the chances of an aboriginal person accessing health assistance. Government agencies have certain policies that also prevent mothers from getting health services for their children for fear of the agencies taking custody of the children for reasons of child endangerment. The reluctance of patients to access healthcare services rather than attending to personal issues (Nolan-Isles et al., 2021). In this context, healthcare workers have realized that aboriginals tend to come to the hospital only when they fall sick rather than come for routine preventive tests.

According to Nolan-Isles et al. Aboriginal healthcare and education workers play a crucial role in bridging the gaps in the collaboration teams (2021). When health centers or clinics are set up in remote areas, there needs to be a presence of locally trained health workers or, health workers trained in the indigenous curriculum. They earn the trust of the locals because they adhere to and conduct themselves by the customs and ways of the indigenous people. In terms of language, family members, guardians or specific community members need to be trained in other languages to interpret instructions given by specialists and visiting healthcare professionals.

The colonial rule overlooked and disregarded many indigenous practices and communities. This led to poor access to health services by these communities which led to high mortality and morbidity rates. In this regard, after the colonial rule came to an end, most of these practices continued further worsening the situation of indigenous people. To overcome this hardship, governments are decolonizing the healthcare systems through different approaches in different countries. Prehn and Ezzy, (2020) argued that even if effective decolonization approaches have yet to be implemented, some of the implementations happening to the indigenous men would help to elevate their health status. Among the most affected are indigenous men who among others, loss of identity and grief, trauma, and marginalization contribute to dilapidated health status. But, interventions like having clinics for men, health camps, and offering classes for fathering and mentorship programs could significantly increase the health status of these men.

As mentioned, the colonial era was tainted with social and cultural injustice to indigenous people which led to poor health. However, different governments are expressing the will to change medical education to include indigenous curricula in their syllabuses. It will produce doctors and nurses who understand the complex health, and traditions and observe the cultural safety of the indigenous people (Lokugamage et al., 2020). Cultural humility and cultural diversity are two different approaches that need to be emphasized in medical and nursing schools. Cultural diversity dictates that some medical practices are allowed in different communities but according to medical students raises questions. It should however be incorporated in lectures to allow the students to understand it and can explain why it is or is not recommended without offending that particular patient

The Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service (The service) was an approach that sort to implement comprehensive primary healthcare in a section of alcoholics in rehabilitative, curative, and preventive, activities. Through the provision of culturally safe services, it proved that aboriginal control was more effective than other government approaches (Freeman et al., 2019). These approaches are implemented to allow indigenous people to access health services without fear of discrimination. They are meant to prepare health providers to cope with the diversity of native people and their cultures. Cultural safety has led to improved health for the indigenous people and also solves the issue of racism, beliefs, and cultural practices.

Cultural identity is the sense of belonging that a person has in their particular upbringing and beliefs. Beliefs are instilled in a person during development and growth in the family and the community. The parents or guardians play a major role in identity in that they teach children what they believe in and what was taught to them by their parents. Gender, race, and sexuality are some of the cultural identities that people align themselves to (publisher], 2022). In the 21st century, some of the traditional known cultural practices are being overlooked and new practices are being adopted. An example is gender change from male to female or vice versa. In practice when confronted by such a situation, the nurse should not be judgmental but should empathize with the patient and serve them as they need. According to Jean Watsons Theory of holistic and authentic care between the patients and the caregivers (Lukose, 2011).

Strength-based approaches take into consideration strengths that a patient possesses and use them to help overcome obstacles and in problem-solving. It has been so much successful that it is being incorporated into universal health services the world over (Cross & Cheyne, 2018). In the psychology units, this approach would be very useful in handling such cases as phobias and addictions. The nurses would include in patients’ daily activities their strengths like board games or singing and dancing or making art. It would help the patients to concentrate on their activities rather than their actual illnesses or addictions. Health literacy is defined as how people understand health information and use that information to make health decisions (Literacy et al., 2022). Furthermore, the information acquired is crucial in many aspects of health dialogue and interpretation of information such as reading a thermometer or calculating medicine dosages. It was discovered that indigenous people have little or no knowledge of medical information about illnesses of the eyes suffered by diabetic patients. The language barrier was one of the obstacles that prevented them from gaining the information. The provision of interpreters and the inclusivity of native languages in medical leaflets were some of the solutions recommended to increase health literacy (Yashadhana et al., 2022). A patient may be admitted to the hospital but does not understand his/her illness, as the nurse, you should provide all the information that will help the patient understand their illness. Answering questions and explaining medication, procedures, and laboratory results are some of the ways the nurse assists.

As Doctor Jean Watson described in her theory, caring regenerates energy and when care is shown to patients, then healing takes place faster. As derived from Florence nightingales’ definition of nursing, it is a process of enabling faster healing and undertaking daily activities unaided or to a peaceful death. All these approaches help the patients in the health facilities to understand better what they are going through and the healing process. Patients feel more satisfied when their fears are alleviated and they are understood by their health service providers. Furthermore, when they find a health service provider who knows about their traditions, they feel at ease and open up to them more effectively. Interpersonal skills are acquired in collaboration and teamwork. In addition, communication skills that help to talk to patients are essential in health facilities (Lukose, 2011).

In multi-agency and multidisciplinary collaboration, it is important to ensure that the teams have adequate knowledge of their goals and targets. Leaders should be chosen according to capability and not through favoritism. Indigenous Australians were significantly disadvantaged in their health management during the colonial time and also continued post-colonial era. Increased morbidity and mortality were experienced in the remote regions of Australia, not due to a lack of medical capabilities but, a lack of knowledge by the indigenous Australians about the health services. This was fueled by the active racism experienced around the world, especially towards natives. Different approaches were implemented to reduce the deaths in these communities and have been successful to some point. As nurses dealing with indigenous people, our roles are clear in these settings to help patients recover more comfortably and make them understand and feel wanted and accepted in society no matter their beliefs or traditions.




(2022). Retrieved 6 October 2022, from

Cross, B., & Cheyne, H. (2018). Strength-based approaches: a realist evaluation of implementation in maternity services in Scotland. Journal Of Public Health26(4), 425-436.

Freeman, T., Baum, F., Mackean, T., Ziersch, A., Sherwood, J., Edwards, T., & Boffa, J. (2019). Case study of a decolonising Aboriginal community controlled comprehensive primary health care response to alcohol‐related harm. Australian And New Zealand Journal Of Public Health43(6), 532-537.

Geia, L., Baird, K., Bail, K., Barclay, L., Bennett, J., & Best, O. et al. (2020). A unified call to action from Australian nursing and midwifery leaders: ensuring that Black lives matter. Contemporary Nurse56(4), 297-308.

Literacy, I., Nielsen-Bohlman, L., Panzer, A., & Kindig, D. (2022). What Is Health Literacy?. Retrieved 6 October 2022, from

Lokugamage, A., Ahillan, T., & Pathberiya, S. (2020). Decolonising ideas of healing in medical education. Journal Of Medical Ethics46(4), 265-272.

Lukose, A. (2011). Developing a Practice Model for Watson’s Theory of Caring. Nursing Science Quarterly24(1), 27-30.

Nolan-Isles, D., Macniven, R., Hunter, K., Gwynn, J., Lincoln, M., & Moir, R. et al. (2021). Enablers and Barriers to Accessing Healthcare Services for Aboriginal People in New South Wales, Australia. International Journal Of Environmental Research And Public Health18(6), 3014.

Prehn, J., & Ezzy, D. (2020). Decolonising the health and well-being of Aboriginal men in Australia. Journal Of Sociology56(2), 151-166.

Profile of Indigenous Australians – Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2022). Retrieved 6 October 2022, from

publisher], [. (2022). 8.2 Exploring Specific Cultural Identities. Retrieved 6 October 2022, from

Schultz, R., Abbott, T., Yamaguchi, J., & Cairney, S. (2018). Indigenous land management as primary health care: qualitative analysis from the Interplay research project in remote Australia. BMC Health Services Research18(1).

Turale, S., & Miller, M. (2006). Improving the health of Indigenous Australians: reforms in nursing education. An opinion piece of international interest. International Nursing Review53(3), 171-177.

Yashadhana, A., Fields, T., Blitner, G., Stanley, R., & Zwi, A. (2022). Trust, culture and communication: determinants of eye health and care among Indigenous people with diabetes in Australia. Retrieved 6 October 2022, from.