A unique relationship to help meet the health needs of a multicultural society
Monash University (School of Nursing and Midwifery) has teamed up with the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health (a part of North Richmond Community Health) to address the health needs of a multicultural society.
Victoria’s cultural diversity is growing. More than 45% of Victorians were either born overseas or have at least one parent born overseas. The more diverse we become, the more our health services need to change to respond to this diversity. Health literacy is one of the strategies that supports this change.
On a national level, 59% of Australians are health illiterate. This means that the majority of Australians struggle to access, understand and use heath information and services. Low health literacy results in poorer health outcomes. To help the health system respond to diversity, there needs to be substantial evidence around best ways to engage with people from refugee and migrant backgrounds and improve health literacy.
The partnership between Monash University School of Nursing and Midwifery and the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health will help develop best-practice models for health services. The Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health has been working with the health sector for the past 21 years to improve the quality of service delivery refugee and migrant clients. Monash University School of Nursing and Midwifery has extensive experience in education and research. Together, they will harness each other’s strengths and work towards building an evidence-base that will pave the way the health sector works with an increasingly diverse community in the years to come.
To strengthen this relationship, Dr Ruth De Souza, Senior Lecturer at Monash University has commenced a joint appointment with the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health to lead its research team. ‘The joint appointment will ensure that there is a strong bridge between research and practice’ said Dr De Souza.
The result of the partnership will be better health outcomes for people from refugee and migrant backgrounds. This partnership will be announced publicly by The Hon Robin Scott, Minister for Multicultural Affairs at an event held at North Richmond Community Health on Wednesday 29 April.
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