National Reconciliation Week highlights need for action to end racism in healthcare

During National Reconciliation Week, which ended yesterday, the AMA reiterated its commitment to ending racism in the health system.

AMA President Dr Omar Khorshid said the AMA was working to achieve health equity for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island peoples by 2032.

He said equity must include an environment and structure which understood and delivered cultural safety in the same way clinical safety was practised.

“Through our Taskforce for Indigenous Health, the AMA is developing its commitment towards cultural safety with support from the leadership of the Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association,” Dr Khorshid said.

The AMA is developing its first Reconciliation Action Plan, to ensure it embedded a “tangible commitment” to reconciliation across all levels of its day-to-day business.

“We are also committed to supporting the growth of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander medical workforce and we continue to invest in this through the annual AMA Indigenous Medical Scholarship.

“Closing the life expectancy gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous people is a national issue in which every individual, organisation and group in Australia can play a role,” he said.

The AMA also supports the work of the Raise the Age Campaign and called on all governments to raise the age of criminal responsibility from 10 years to 14 years of age.

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