Going above and beyond to provide quality primary health care
Through dedication to their patients, their local community, and to teamwork, Townsville Aboriginal and Islander Health Service (TAIHS) has made some commendable achievements over the past year, all of which contribute to improving health outcomes for communities in the Townsville region.
TAIHS aims to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to take control of their individual, family, and community health, which encompasses physical, social, emotional, cultural, spiritual, and economic wellbeing.
Their community has access to holistic primary health care that is culturally appropriate and incorporates prevention, promotion, and treatment.
In 2018, TAIHS was named Aboriginal Medical Service of the Year as part of Australian General Practice Accreditation Limited’s (AGPAL’s) Excellence Awards. The Excellence Awards recognise accredited practices, organisations, and services which consistently go above and beyond to implement and embed quality improvements, have teams that love to innovate, demonstrate a dedicated approach to patient and consumer services and/ or care, and have a clear understanding of related industry standards.
TAIHS Chief Executive Officer Kathy Anderson was also featured on the front cover of Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council’s (QAIHC’s) Sector Leader magazine, highlighting her strong leadership and dedication to making sure TAIHS is more than a health service.
Dr Anderson said that the recent recognition of their achievements is a culmination of the principles and values of the TAIHS workforce.
“All of our services are developed and based on the needs of the community to deliver health and wellbeing outcomes,” Dr Anderson said.
“Our approach to business is underpinned by principles of collaboration and sustainability, as we ensure we provide culturally appropriate service provision, enable client self-determination, deliver services that are evidence and needs-based, and provide non-discriminatory access to health care services and non-judgemental support.
“Our efforts are driven by community aspiration, empowerment, and self-determination, and we ensure our activities make a positive difference to primary health and social and emotional wellbeing.
“Our programs provide quality holistic care integrating local, cultural, and scientific knowledge, and it is important to us that our people maintain strong connections with community.”
TAIHS has been working closely with Northern Queensland Primary Health Network (NQPHN) on a number of projects providing maternal and child health support, youth psychology services, psychiatry services, increased access for chronic disease management, as well as contributing to the children in out-of-home care pathway development.
Dr Anderson said working together in partnership with other organisations is essential to delivering appropriate services to their community.
“TAIHS has built strong partnerships with NQPHN, the Department of Health, service agencies, community groups and members, and peak bodies with the aim to improve health outcomes for people within our community,” Dr Anderson said.
“Working together with other like-minded organisations is an important way that we can pool resources to develop and provide quality services and programs so our community can receive the right care, in the right place, at the right time.
“TAIHS is grateful to NQPHN for recognising the need for essential maternal and child health, youth, and psychology services to help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander residents in the Townsville region to live happier, healthier, longer lives.”