• Subject Name : Nursing

Healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders

Table of Contents


Relationship between healthcare safety and communication.

Situational analysis of Aboriginal healthcare.

Effect of quality communication for healthcare safety.

Nursing bias and its impact on culturally safe healthcare delivery.

Highlight culturally safe care factors.

Communication components used in the scenario and its limitations.

Communication barriers in video and effective ways of communication.



Introduction to Healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders

Countries like Australia has been facing prominent challenge in healthcare especially for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders for their lack of awareness in health related factors. Besides this, the ill equipped healthcare system of the country also enhances the challenge more (Minister’s Foreword, 2020). The current discussion is focusing on healthy communication practice with the above-mentioned patient group for understanding their social values and offer them bias-free quality treatment.

Relationship Between Healthcare Safety and Communication

Contextually, communication is the key of healthcare, through which the healthcare professionals can ensure patient’s satisfaction and safety as well. Additionally, it also can be considered that the healthy communication can discard the chances of continuity breakdown in healthcare (Allen et al., 2016). Hence, it can be proved that the healthcare and communication has a direct connection between them and the factors collectively develop the quality of care giving as well. In a more detailed manner, it is found that the Aboriginal people of Australia have less knowledge about their health and available healthcare facilities too. This enhances the importance of quality communication practice between healthcare giver and patient. As opined by Granger (2019), through better communication practice, the caregivers can develop indigenous’ trust on healthcare and this improves their interaction in treatment process. Through this, safety measures can be ensured in Aboriginal care.

Situational Analysis of Aboriginal Healthcare

Based on the current situation, it can be highlighted that the Aboriginal people of Australia have been facing more mortality rate than the non-indigenous citizens, due to chronic disease burden. This can be supported by health reports, which well evaluated that there were almost 2988 deaths in 2017; standardised rate of death is almost 976.3 in every 100,000 people (Causes of death, 2020).

As shown in the figure 1, the rate of chronic diseases is high for indigenous people. Adding to this, the situation becomes worse for the Aboriginals, as the racism within the territory of Australia is backed by political influences, as these reduce accessibility of premium quality healthcare opportunities (Causes of death, 2020).

Effect of Quality Communication for Healthcare Safety

Based on the previous analysis, it can be identified that the situation of Aboriginal treatment is in complete dismal. The situation is challenging for the aforementioned groups, as their lack of awareness regarding their health and available healthcare offerings. Hence, Blake et al. (2020) rightly identified that the quality communication by the healthcare professionals with the Aboriginal patients can enhance the trust worthiness between the service receiver and care givers and this can improve the quality of healthcare and safety. Contextually, quality communication can be practiced by ensuring to protect Aboriginal culture and beliefs intact while treatment process. This can motivate the family members of patients to participate in treatment and this enhances the safety and success rate of healthcare offerings as well.

Nursing Bias and Its Impact on Culturally Safe Healthcare Delivery

Based on the previous researches, it can be highlighted that the countries like Australia have faced numerous healthcare biases due to the difference of gender, language, age, sex, and other factors. Thus, it can be understood that certain challenges are resulted in nursing as they are unable to make right decisions due to discrimination amongst patients (Titmusset al., 2019). Difficulties in decision-making can affect the mindset of the patients and their family members as well. The cultural aspects of Aboriginal people are affected due to this and they become de-focused from the treatment processes. Thus, the delivery of the healthcare professionals is not safe and satisfying for the patients. The concerned factor affects the healthcare by enabling underuse or overuse of issues, which mislead the caregivers towards healthcare failures. The patients are affected by this process harmfully due to unstable platform of healthcare management (Blake et al., 2020).

Highlight Culturally Safe Care Factors

In-depth analysis of the previous section, it can be sensed that the biasness in nursing can impacted the outcomes of healthcare in a negative manner. This needed to be addressed and mitigated for a safe and satisfying treatment experience for Aboriginal people in Australia. Based on the ample research reports, it can be highlighted that the healthcare professionals would like to perform REM framework within their treatment process. As opined by Poweret al. (2016), the mentioned framework guided caregivers to respect their patients and their cultural beliefs. Through this, professionals can satisfy their patients’ individual beliefs and cultural integrity. Besides this, the culturally safe treatment can be ensured through engagement process too. As shown in figure 2, the caregivers are looking forward to engage with the patients and their family members during the treatment process. This offers an opportunity to the patients to share their insights regarding the disease and treatment. The practice offers transparency within the treatment and improves cultural safety management rate as well. In the third tag of the treatment process, the professionals are looking forward to move forward in treatment. Hence, they influence the patients and teach them about the proper medication processes.

Communication Components Used in The Scenario and Its Limitations

Based on the attached interview of Angela regarding her healthcare experiences, it can be identified that the lady had faced negative aspects of being Aboriginal people. The father of the lady was Aboriginal, hence; she had been separated from her father in very early age. In-depth analysis of the overall interview, it can be recognised that the lady communicated with the caregivers by verbal interaction, which was terrible in nature for that patient. Besides this, the responsible nurse was advised Angela that her identity as a white person can prove to be helpful for the lady (UTS: Health, 2020). This interaction with the nurse identified that there is certain biasness in nursing. The factor can be supported by the fact that, even when 2 years old boy of Angela was suffering from coughing badly, the concerned nurse has ignored Angela’s concerns and avoids the child’s problems. The caregiver even ignored the symptoms of the patients as well (UTS: Health, 2020). Collectively, it can be considered that the mentioned factors are limitations of nursing and communication process with the patients, which reduces the quality of healthcare.

Communication Barriers in Video and Effective Ways of Communication

After accumulating relevant information sets from the above discussion, it can be identified that the lady has low level of experience in healthcare by appointed nurse from major hospitals. The barriers can be recognised, as the healthcare professionals have considered their own mindset and assumption in treatment and avoid documentation and recorded information about the patient’s issues (UTS: Health, 2020). Besides these, the caregiver have found to be lower skilled, as she ignored patient’s parent while recording the problems. Biasness in nursing can be found in this process of communication as well (UTS: Health, 2020).

Contextually, the best way to communicate with the patients is to discard biasness and make the patient feel comfortable to inform his/ her issues. Documentation needed to be done properly for keeping the records of the patient for further usages. The tone of the nurses and other healthcare professionals are needed to be polite, which satisfied the mindset of the patients. Moreover, the communication can be done through online platforms as well. This can help the caregivers to make medication decisions in real-time. This improves the quality of healthcare and maintains the cultural integrity in healthcare.

Conclusion on Healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders

The current discussion is dealing with the factors related to Aboriginal treatment process in Australia. The sections of the study have evaluated the factors, through which the healthcare professionals can maintain a culturally safe and quality healthcare offerings. The discussion also identified the biasness in nursing and its impact on healthcare by adding past experiences of Angela too. Better ways of communication in healthcare offerings have been identified in the above study as well. 

References for Healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders

Allen, D., Braithwaite, J., Sandall, J., &Waring, J. (2016).Towards a sociology of healthcare safety and quality. Sociology of Health & Illness, 38(2), 181-197.DOI: 10.1111/1467-9566.12390.

Blake, T. L., Chang, A. B., Chatfield, M. D., Marchant, J. M., Petsky, H. L., &McElrea, M. S. (2020). How does parent/self‐reporting of common respiratory conditions compare with medical records among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (Indigenous) children and young adults?. Journal of paediatrics and child health, 56(1), 55-60.DOI: 10.1111/jpc.14490.

Causes of death (2020) The health and welfare of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples: 2015. DOI:10.25816/5ebcbd26fa7e4

Granger, G. (2019).Communication in the Health Care Setting. Com Med Pub Heal Edu: CMPHE-106. http://www.academia.edu/download/59764497/communication-in-the-health-care-setting20190617-105949-1dcgzgp.pdf.

Lim, R., Moseti, D., Ganga Nair, N. N., Rombano, S., & Penman, J. (2020). What if international nurses who studied in Australia were to practise in a hospital in their country of origin?. https://research.monash.edu/files/311037323/311036870_oa.pdf.

Minister’s Foreword (2020) National Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013–2023 https://www1.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/content/B92E980680486C3BCA257BF0001BAF01/$File/health-plan.pdf.

Power, T., Virdun, C., Sherwood, J., Parker, N., Van Balen, J., Gray, J., & Jackson, D. (2016). REM: A collaborative framework for building indigenous cultural competence. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 27(5), 439-446. [Abstract from REM: A Collaborative Framework for Building Indigenous Cultural Competence]https://opus.lib.uts.edu.au/bitstream/10453/36724/6/26069032.pdf.

S. Chou, H. Yen and A. Pang, "A REM-Enabled Diagnostic Framework in Cellular-Based IoT Networks," in IEEE Internet of Things Journal, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 5273-5284, June 2019, doi: 10.1109/JIOT.2019.2900093.

Titmuss, A., Davis, E. A., Brown, A., & Maple‐Brown, L. J. (2019).Emerging diabetes and metabolic conditions among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people. Medical Journal of Australia, 210(3), 111-113.DOI: 10.5694/mja2.13002.

UTS: Health (2020) Interview with Angela https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVISLhZKVMg&feature=youtu.be.

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