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Centre for Remote Health
In March, for the first time, a national committee of psychologists chose to meet outside its Melbourne base, with Alice Springs being the chosen location. 
 
The Centre for Remote Health was pleased to host the National Committee of the Clinical College of the Australian Psychological Society, providing a first visit to Alice Springs for many of the 20-member committee.

The productive two-day meeting included discussions on many topics facing the profession of psychology with a particular emphasis on the issues relevant to clinical psychology. A suggestion of establishing a placement pipeline for Masters and Doctoral Clinical Psychology students was enthusiastically endorsed.

On Sunday, the Centre for Remote Health’s Kath Martin, presented a session on cultural considerations in delivering effective health care. Committee members found this session particularly helpful, and included ideas that would be incorporated into their clinical practice for more effective communication with their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients.

A visit to nearby Jessie, Emily and Simpsons Gaps, significant cultural sites for Arrernte people and part of the beautiful Central Australian landscape, was also included.
Professor Tim Carey, Director Centre for Remote HealthClinical Psychologist and Director of the Centre for Remote Health, Professor Tim Carey will spend 4 month’s studying in the United States after being awarded the 2017-18 Fulbright Northern Territory Senior Scholarship.

The Fulbright Scholarship was motivated by Professor Carey’s discovery of the lack of routine evaluation that occurs by health professionals and other service providers in remote communities. “By embedding regular and ongoing monitoring and evaluation there will be the opportunity to ensure that programs in remote communities are driven by community identified priorities and are producing tangible and important benefits for the residents of those communities.”

Professor Carey will spend time learning from his colleagues at the Center for Behavioral Health Innovation (BHI), at Antioch University in New Hampshire and, together with his own expertise will develop a framework of training and mentoring that will be provided to remote communities in Australia.

The Fulbright Program was established by Senator J William Fulbright and is the United States’ flagship foreign exchange program aimed at promoting mutual understanding through educational and cultural exchange.
Lucille Clements, Poche Centre NT, Kath Martin, Jenny Longland and Annie Farthing, Centre for Remote Health at the Close the Gap Day in Alice SpringsFlinders NT including the Centre for Remote Health and Poche Centre NT were well represented at the National Close the Gap Day in Alice Springs on March 16th.

Many organisations gathered to show their support, spread the word, and explain their role in ‘closing the health and life expectancy gap’ between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous Australians. 

The Flinders NT booth had a steady stream of visitors providing great opportunities for networking, community engagement and raising the profile of Flinders in the Northern Territory.
Heather Jensen assessing a client using the Kimberley Indigenous Cognitive Assessment (KICA) toolDementia is three to five times more prevalent in Indigenous Australians than in non-Indigenous Australians and is acknowledged to be a significant issue for those in remote communities.
 
A two day workshop Recognising and Responding to Dementia in Indigenous Communities designed for primary health care and related workers who work in remote and Indigenous communities, will be held at the Centre for Remote Health in Alice Springs on April 5 - 6th 2017.
 
In this inter-professional workshop, facilitated by Allied Health academics, Annie Farthing and Heather Jensen, participants will develop a clear understanding of dementia and develop other skills and strategies to assess people including the Kimberley Indigenous Cognitive Assessment (KICA) tool.

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  for more details.
Associate Professor Sue LenthallAssociate Professor Sue Lenthall, the current academic leader at the Centre for Remote Health, has accepted the position of Director, Flinders NT Katherine Campus, commencing on March 6, 2017.

Sue was the first employee of the Centre for Remote Health (CRH) in 1999 and the inaugural course coordinator of the Remote Health Practice Program.

Sue's extensive experience in medical education, clinical practice and research will be missed at CRH and a tremendous asset to Flinders NT, Katherine.
Flinders NT are delighted to welcome 3 new Student Placement Support Officers, who are here to support Allied Health and Nursing student placements Territory Wide.

Covering the Top end is Heather Kirk.  Heather has significant experience within health and education, having worked previously with the Department of Health and the Centre for Remote Health in Alice Springs as a Student Support Officer.   Heather has a great working knowledge of the NT, having worked in Alice Springs, Yuendumu and Katherine.  She is looking forward to working with the students and supporting their placements.

In Alice Springs, Sheree Zadow has recently returned to employment at the Centre for Remote Health after an absence of over 12 months. In the interim Sheree lived in a remote community west of Alice Springs where she managed two Commonwealth Government contracts - the Remote School Attendance Strategy Program (RSAS) and the School Nutrition Program (SNP).
Having lived in central Australia for over 40 years, Sheree’s employment background has predominantly been in Indigenous education working in a variety of roles. These roles include: literacy tutoring, remote campus delivery, a rural skills and petrol sniffer preventative program oversight, project coordination, sports carnivals, professional development, marketing and promotion activities.
Sheree is enjoying settling into her position as Student Placement Support Officer in Alice Springs.

In Tennant Creek, Pene Curtis has recently commenced.  Pene grew up in Darwin and has lived in Katherine and Jabiru before moving to Tennant Creek in 1988 which is her husband’s, David, home town. She is a mother of 4 adult children and 10 grandchildren.
Her background in work is Community Development and Education, working throughout the Barkly Region in remote communities.
Outside of work she enjoys camping, travelling, walking, swimming and knitting beanies She is also involved in the Rotary EClub of Outback Australia and CWA Tenant Creek.

Professor Tim CareyDespite how rewarding and fulfilling their work can be, remote health professionals often work in geographical, professional, and social isolation as well as in cross-cultural contexts. Stress and burnout can be serious problems that impact on the recruitment and retention of a stable, competent and confident workforce.

The Centre for Remote Health’s short course Looking after #1: Resilient Self-Care for Remote Health Professionals addresses unique challenges faced by RHPs working in remote settings. The half day workshop, developed and facilitated by clinical psychologist, Professor Tim Carey provides participants with opportunities to learn about and develop a plan for robust and sustainable self-care.

What participants say about this workshop
Very relevant, interactive and thought provoking
Delivered in an interesting and instructive way
Made me feel motivated to have better self-care

Find out more about this course
Enquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Flinders-Student-and-PreceptorStudents on placements in the NT and their supervisors are receiving increased support from Flinders NT through an expansion in Commonwealth funding. The aim of this workforce support is to enable an increase in rural and remote placements in the Northern Territory. Research has shown that positive placement experiences increase the likelihood of later recruitment to remote and rural areas. Key to the experience for students is quality supervision and preceptorship, as well as safe and affordable accommodation and good lines of communication.
 
The support includes managing logistics for students, universities, and supervisors to ensure excellent experiences; supervisor training and support; subsidised accommodation, use of Flinders computer facilities, study and socialising spaces, cultural awareness training and orientation activities. In addition, allied health and nursing students enrolled in Flinders and CDU programs are eligible for a stipend to assist with placement expenses.

New innovations in Central Australia at the Centre for Remote Health in Alice Springs include student networking sessions and the development of new nursing placement opportunities in Tennant Creek. Activity in the Top End, including Katherine and Nhulunbuy includes consultations and discussions with key stakeholders including CDU, Top End Health Service, the Department of Health and supervisors of existing student placements.
 
The Flinders NT Student Placement Team

Top End  
Dr Narelle Campbell Assoc Prof, Academic lead, Community and Social Accountability
Heather Kirk Student Support Officer, Darwin
Amanda Read Student Support Officer, Katherine
Gemma Porteous Student Support Officer, Nhulunbuy
Top End Enquiries This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Central Australia  
Annie Farthing Lecturer in Remote Allied Health
Jessie Anderson Nursing Lecturer
Sheree Zadow Student Support Officer, Alice Springs
Pene Curtis Student Support Officer, Tennant Creek
Central Australia Enquiries This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   
  Find out more about student placements in Central Australia
  
Barbara Richards, Lecturer Indigenous Knowledges and Culture, Centre for Remote HealthCentre for Remote Health welcomes Barbara Richards, in the position of Lecturer Indigenous Knowledges and Culture. Barbara will be coordinating and facilitating the award winning short course, Introduction to Central Australia Aboriginal Cultures and Context.

An Anmatjere woman, Barbara was born in Alice Springs and her family and cultural connections stem from the Ti-Tree region of Central Australia. Barbara has worked most recently as Campus Operations Manager for Central Australia with the Batchelor Institute. Her career path has included working with and for Aboriginal people of the central region with many organisations and programs. Her involvement in health promotion has included the Healthy Heart project, National Workshop on Cervical and Breast Cancer, Aboriginal Health Worker Career Pathways and the Primary Health Care Access Program.

Barbara has qualifications in Aboriginal History and is passionate about teaching and maintaining Aboriginal culture and knowledges.

In February the Centre for Remote Health (CRH) and Poche Centre NT jointly hosted Professor Ryuki Kassai, his wife Professor Masako Ii, two General Practitioner (GP) registrars and two junior faculty members from Japan.

Professor Kassai, a GP and Chair of the Department of Community and Family Medicine at the Fukushima Medical University led the primary care response to the 2011 Fukushima tsunami that devastated the east coast of Japan, and the subsequent nuclear power station disaster.

Professor Kassai gave a CRH seminar titled: Implementing primary care policy in Japan and recovering from the disaster in Fukushima: a mission impossible? He spoke about his role after the tsunami and nuclear power station disaster at Fukushima, giving a personal account of his experience in leading the response and highlighting the ramifications of not having an established primary health care management system.  Professor Kassai also spoke about his role as the Asia Pacific representative of World Organisation of Family Doctors (WONCA) Working Party on Research and how he would like to build stronger relationships between GPs from Japan, Australia and other countries.

The visit also included a tour of the Alice Springs Hospital, the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Western Desert Dialysis (Purple House), Central Australian Aboriginal Congress and Simpsons Gap.

Professor Kassai had this to say about his visit “I was very impressed by the power of Alice Springs which I feel consists of the power of the people, the earth, and the universe. I feel really lucky to have had a chance to visit Alice Springs in my lifetime, and so did my team. Thank you very much also for giving me a chance to talk about Japanese primary care and the disaster”.

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