New AMA position statement highlights importance of cultural safety

14 Oct 2021

Medical practices that are culturally safe contribute to better health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples – and this is reflected in the AMA Cultural Safety position statement.

The AMA has released the Cultural Safety position statement, which outlines the AMA’s commitment to  culturally safe medical practice to improve health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The position statement was developed by the AMA Taskforce on Indigenous Health, with expertise and oversight from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander doctors guiding the development process through every stage. Delivering culturally safe and respectful health care includes:

  • Acknowledging social, economic, cultural, historic and behavioural factors influencing health at the individual, community and population levels;
  • Reflecting on one’s own culture, attitudes and beliefs and the impact of these when providing health care to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples;
  • Participating in education and ongoing training to help avoid negative impacts while providing health care to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The AMA understands that an ongoing and meaningful commitment to cultural safety in our organisation requires accountability. The AMA aims to extend its reach across the medical profession to contribute to making the Australian health system free of racism and for the next generation of doctors to be equipped with the skills and training to provide culturally safe health care to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

In working towards this, the AMA Federal Council will undertake the Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association Cultural Safety Training Program in 2022. The AMA is also working towards the first Reconciliation Action Plan across the AMA Federation.