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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health

Three traditionally painted Aboriginal didgeridoos

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) recognises the unique place of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia, and acknowledges their ongoing spiritual and cultural custodianship of their lands.

The RANZCP also recognises the right for all Australians to experience good mental health, and seeks to redress the inequities in health experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities through a variety of initiatives.

This page brings together resources to support the work of health professionals in improving knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health issues.

Our Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Mental Health Committee

The RANZCP's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health Committee is composed of psychiatrists who have direct experience working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health, as well as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members who are involved in mental health service provision and policy development. 

It is committed to and passionate about improving access to effective mental health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and/or communities.

Meet the committee members and find out more about their work

Latest news

Visit to Apunipima Cape York 

HealthinfoNet - release of new online resources 

The Dance of Life

An Aboriginal painting called 'The Dance of Life'

The Dance of Life by Professor Helen Milroy, 2006. 

It's important that health professionals working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities take a holistic approach to their work in order to achieve the best outcomes possible.

The Dance of Life, developed by Professor Helen Milroy, is a multi-dimensional model which combines paintings, narrative, theory and existing evidence into a framework designed to assist practitioners in understanding health and wellbeing from an Aboriginal perspective.

 

Read more about The Dance of Life

Resources

General resources

A painting called Bush Medicine Leaves by Gloria Petyarre

 

Bush Medicine Leaves by Gloria Petyarre.

Read more about Gloria Petyarre

Educational material

  • E-learning modules
    Four online learning modules on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health.
  • Indigenous EPAs in the RANZCP 2012 Fellowship Program
    Information on the Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs) which are part of the College's 2012 Fellowship training program.  Includes Stage 2 EPAs on Indigenous mental health.
  • Nicheportal website 
    Educational resources for medical specialists who care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and patients.

Useful links

Events

World Indigenous Health Conference

Creating Futures Conference 
11-15 May 2015
Cairns,Queensland 
Information: Conference flyer [PDF; 76 KB]

13th National Rural Health Conference

24–27 May 2015
Darwin, Northern Territory
Information: Conference website

2015 Australian Indigenous Doctor's Association 
16 - 19 September
Adelaide, South Australia
Information: Conference website

 

This page and some of the associated resources were made possible through Australian Government funding. 

Disclaimer

Please be aware that this website and associated resources may contain the names or images of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples who are now deceased.