Health Service Utilisation and Linkage Project

Michael Bentley

A research project team with members from Flinders and La Trobe Universities and the Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council has developed a four month project that represents the developmental first stage (Stage 1) of a larger research project (Stage 2) that aims to increase understanding about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s use of services with a particular focus on identifying salient community and family level cultural and psychosocial factors that influence appropriate access and use (including non-use) of existing health services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in urban and peri-urban areas. Stage 1 will determine the most appropriate and feasible methods and approaches for gaining this type of information from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in urban and/or peri-urban locations.

Stage 1 aims to increase understanding and agreement about how to approach research into patterns of service utilisation (including non-utilisation) by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in urban and peri-urban locations in ways that are both effective and culturally safe, and to facilitate extensive involvement of key stakeholders.

The key objectives are:

  • To review current evidence in this area; including methodology
  • To bring together potential research collaborators to explore the issues in detail and seek wider agreement to the most feasible approach
  • To develop a full research design and budget (Stage 2) to be presented to the CRCAH Board for approval.

A literature review had been commissioned and was completed in January 2007. A stakeholder workshop and Stage 2 development followed in 2007. The CRCAH has decided not to proceed to Stage 2 of the project.