The Link Between Primary Health Care and Health Outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians

Case studies

This review explores the evidence both domestically and internationally as to whether access to high quality primary health care is essential to enhancing Indigenous health status.

Page last updated: June 2008

We have already pointed towards possible reasons for the disconnect between the local and jurisdictional evidence of the effectiveness of primary health care. Simply put, well-resourced, locally-based primary health care services delivering strongly-evidenced and well-designed interventions, are not the rule in Indigenous Australia. Where they do occur, many such services or programs are not resourced to be able to document their health outcomes statistically. Fortunately, some do and it is to some of these which we now turn.

Whereas the evidence in the previous chapters of this report arose directly from the formal literature search, in this section we use examples to which our panel of experienced practitioners and health service providers drew our attention.

We selected the following case studies not because they are somehow ‘better’ than what is being done elsewhere – we are confident that there are many primary health care services and programs doing equally good work – but because their successes have been documented as having beneficial health effects measurable by formal statistical measures, including mortality rates.