Summary: Indigenous Mental Health

1392 Words6 Pages
It is well-known that the health issue of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people has been constantly discussed and analysed up to the present. Indigenous Australian experience poorer health outcome compare to other population in Australian, and also they experienced significantly higher rates of mental illness within their communities, and the suicide rate approximately more than double higher than for the general population (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare,2009). The purpose of this essay is to discuss the factor that associated with higher rate of mental illness and suicide behavior regard to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, the concept of cultural, social and emotional well-being that triggers this phenomenon.…show more content…
The experience of racism will bring negative stress and emotion, and may have the risk to develop a range of psychological and physiological problems (Sherwood, 2013). Ferdinand (2013) reports the racism problems among Aboriginal Australian by using a survey. The outcome highlights that almost every Aboriginal who participated in this survey had experienced racism during daily activity, and they or their family members have all experienced a different level of stress when coping with racism. In spite of the anti-racist practice has improved the relationship between Indigenous people and non-Indigenous people, but the ongoing forms of discrimination are still continuing and impacts on Indigenous mental health. Furthermore, Indigenous Australian has a higher prevalence of smoking, alcohol and drug intake. The psychological stress they experience may consequently lead to harmful alcohol and drug use, which also causes the mental health problem among Indigenous Australians. Bearing in mind the previous points, all those risk factors and issues for Aboriginal mental health have contributed the high rate of mental illness and also leads to suicide or self-harm behaviours among Aboriginal…show more content…
It is important that the strategy has to draw on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives, understanding what they need and provide the most effective way to reduce the mental illness and suicide prevention (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2009). According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfares, “Closing the gap” is a continuing national program which to help closing the gap of mental health of ATSI people. In the area of improving the mental health of Indigenous people, one strategy under the program is the National Action Plan on Mental Health 2006-2011. This plan elaborates that health practitioners who working in Indigenous community are being trained to identify and address mental illness, as well as other associated issues among indigenous people and make referrals for their treatment. In addition, the national plan also highlights that develop the capacity of health practitioner, local community and community organisation, provide better professional support and resources to enable Indigenous people to improve their mental health and develop cultural awareness and suicide prevention training for local health practitioner in mainstream
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