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Western Sydney receives boost to improve health outcomes for chronically ill Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

posted: 4 Aug 2020
With the largest urban Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population in Australia, Blacktown is now home to Western Sydney Integrated Team Care (ITC); a vital federally-funded program, facilitated by Western Sydney Primary Health Network, operated by WentWest, to improve the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with chronic conditions.

 

Now located in the heart of Blacktown and managed by a proud Wiradjuri woman, Terrieanne Whitting and her team, the program ensures Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have improved access, continuity, and quality of care.

“Western Sydney has one of the highest rates of diabetes compared to the national figure. In addition, heart and respiratory diseases, asthma and hepatitis are increasingly common chronic conditions seen within our community.

“Through the successful implementation of this program, we not only hope to reduce pressure on our hospital system by managing and preventing these conditions within the community, we want to ensure our people receive the comprehensive and holistic care they need, when they need it - in turn improving the overall wellbeing of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population.

“Servicing the greater Western Sydney region, my team and I will be working proactively to link clients to primary and secondary care services while supporting them on their journey. We’ll also build connections with the medical community to offer support and education to enhance the delivery of culturally appropriate care,” stated Mrs Whitting.

As Western Sydney ITC’s care coordinators and outreach workers all hail from the local area, the team collectively has a deep understanding of the complex health care needs of its community.

“Having been born and raised in Western Sydney, I’ve seen first-hand the barriers there are to receiving effective and culturally appropriate health care. I’m proud and honoured to be delivering this program to our region, not only to see greater access to appropriate health care, but also ensure my people feel comfortable being treated by mainstream practitioners and feel supported to follow through on the recommendations from their health team,” continued Mrs Whitting.

Local business, Kildare Road Medical Centre, owned and operated by Berni, Louise, Peter and Chris Rushton, also welcome the program to the region. Having spent the last 30 years building enduring relationships with members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, they look forward to working alongside Western Sydney ITC to further enable its clients to get the care, health education and support they require to achieve better health outcomes.

7/15-17 Kildare Road, Blacktown, NSW

 

This service has been made possible by funding from Western Sydney Primary Health Network.

Terrieanne Whitting, managing the new Western Sydney ITC program
Terrieanne Whitting, managing the new Western Sydney ITC program

 
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