Action needed to give indigenous children a healthier start to life

12 Dec 2013

The AMA Indigenous Health Report Card 2012-13, The Healthy Early Years – Getting the Right Start in Life, was released this week by Assistant Minister for Health, Senator the Hon Fiona Nash, at Parliament House in Canberra.

AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, said it is the right of every Australian child to have the best start in life but in Australia today not every child benefits from this right. Many of our children are missing out, he said, but none more so than Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.

"We are seeing improvements through government commitment and cooperation on closing the gap initiatives, but much more action is needed. It is crucial for the momentum to be sustained by renewing the COAG National Partnership Agreements on Indigenous Health and on Indigenous Early Childhood Development for another five years," Dr Hambleton said.

The AMA makes several recommendations in its Indigenous Health Report Card 2012-13to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in their early years.

Full media release.

Listen to Dr Hambleton speaking with ABC Radio National about this issue.