AHCWA leads the WA Aboriginal Health Promotion Collaboration Program, which represents 19 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services. Program partners include the Asthma Foundation WA, Cancer Council WA, Combined Universities Centre for Rural Health, Curtin University (School of Public Health), Diabetes WA, institute of Child Health Research/Kulunga, and the National Heart Foundation of Australia (WA division).
The WA Aboriginal Health Promotion Collaboration program has increased the capacity of the Aboriginal health promotion workforce through the creation of six Aboriginal Health Promotion Development officers (AHPDO) positions, which will be based in six Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHS) across the state. Each AHPDO will work closely with existing health promotion activities in their respective ACCHS, and will also develop and implement health promotion activities that are population based and outside of the ACCHS clinic.
The health issues that will be addressed through this program include:
prevention of chronic disease through adopting health lifestyle behaviors in elation to tobacco use, physical activity, nutrition and alcohol consumption;
reduction of tobacco and alcohol use among pregnant women and reduction in exposure to tobacco smoke; and
promotion of recommendations around breast feeding and introduction of solids.
AHCWA recruited and employed a Health Promotion Collaboration Project Health Promotion Coordinator, who commenced at ACHWA on 30 March 2008. The coordinator was responsible for recruiting six AHPDO, who are based in the following ACCHS:
Derbarl Yerrigan Health Service (East Perth)
South West Aboriginal Medical Service (Bunbury)
Bega Garnbirringu Health Services Corporation (Kalgoorlie)
Geraldton Regional Aboriginal Medical Service (Geraldton)
Wirrika Maya Aboriginal Health Service (South Hedland)
Kimberley Aboriginal Medical Service Council (Broome).
The health promotion officers commenced the Graduate Certificate of Health Promotion at Curtin University of Technology in semester 2 (July 2008) and should complete studies in June 2010. The first block of training was done from 23 June 2008 until 9 July and consisted of a four day short course in health promotion at Curtin, which is part of the Graduate Certificate.