A Textbook of Australian Rural Health by Siaw-Teng Liaw, Sue Kilpatrick, Australian Rural Health

By Siaw-Teng Liaw, Sue Kilpatrick, Australian Rural Health Education Network

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Other initiatives included the setting up of a network of divisions of general practice and the introduction of retention grants for rural doctors. These Australian Government initiatives were led and embraced by health ministers and ‘champions’ working within the health department. At this time too, a number of peak rural and remote health professional bodies became more active professional groups lobbying on behalf of their constituents. These were the Rural Doctors Association of Australia (RDAA), the Association for Australian Rural Nurses (AARN), Services for Australian Rural and Remote Allied Health (SARRAH), the Council of Remote Area Nurses of Australia (CRANA) and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO).

In this way, it connects the rural environment, population and social issues with health in rural Australia, and demonstrates why rural practice is not limited to the clinical. The book gives attention to Indigenous health, issues of access and equity, culture, workforce and rural health service delivery. Learning activities 1. Identify three positive aspects of rural health practice and three challenges or difficulties of rural health practice. Which of these would you particularly like, and which would you find most difficult?

Rural, Regional and Remote Health Indicators of Health, Rural Health Series 5, AIHW, Canberra. cfm/title/10123 This monograph provides a comparative overview of health, social, economic and service indicators across geographical regions in Australia. 29 A Textbook of Australian Rural Health • Bourke L, Sheridan C, Russell U, Jones G, DeWitt D and Liaw S-T (2004). Developing a conceptual understanding of rural health practice. Australian Journal of Rural Health 1:181–186. The authors provide a conceptual framework for considering rural health issues in Australia and describe five salient aspects that characterise rural health practice: rural– urban health differentials, access, confidentiality, cultural security and team practice.

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