Special Issue "The Health and Wellbeing of Indigenous and Tribal Peoples around the Globe"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Global Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Joan Cunningham
Website
Guest Editor
Menzies School of Health Research, Charles Darwin University, Casuarina NT 0810, Australia
Interests: equity; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians; social epidemiology; access to health care; chronic diseases; mixed methods research; capacity building
Dr. Abbey Diaz
Website
Guest Editor
Menzies School of Health Research, Charles Darwin University, Casuarina NT 0810, Australia
Interests: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health; health equity; epidemiology; health services research; data-linkage; administrative data; multi-morbidity; cardio-oncology; cancer survivorship; patient-centered care; care pathways
Dr. Kalinda Griffiths
Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney NSW 2052, Australia
Interests: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health; Indigenous identification; epidemiology; linked administrative data; cancer epidemiology; equity measurement; Indigenous data governance
Dr. Lisa Whop
Website
Guest Editor
College of Health & Medicine, Australian National University, Canberra ACT 0200, Australia
Interests: equity focused research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people; record linkage; cervical cancer prevention; cancer screening; vaccination; health services; health systems

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,


We invite you to contribute to a Special Issue on The Health and Wellbeing of Indigenous and Tribal Peoples around the Globe in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.


This Special Issue is intended to showcase best practice in research across a broad range of topic areas relating to the health and wellbeing of Indigenous and Tribal peoples around the world, with a particular emphasis on work that goes beyond mere description and seeks to implement and evaluate positive change at a local, regional, national, or global level. In keeping with our focus on Indigenous and Tribal peoples, our definition of health and wellbeing is a holistic one, incorporating physical, mental, social, emotional, spiritual, and cultural aspects, as well as family and community and connection to land and waters across time.


Indigenous and Tribal peoples across the world continue to be adversely affected by the ongoing impacts of colonization and dispossession, past and present racism and discrimination, socioeconomic disadvantage, and reduced access to services, all of which are manifested in disparities across a range of outcomes. Research can be a tremendous force for good, provided it reflects the needs and priorities of Indigenous and Tribal peoples and is conducted in ways that empower Indigenous and Tribal people and communities. All too often, this has not been the case, but things have begun to change in recent years. This Special Issue will showcase the ways in which appropriate, high-quality research can help us to understand and overcome the complex inequities experienced by Indigenous and Tribal peoples around the globe.


We welcome manuscripts reporting research conducted by, with, and for the benefit of Indigenous and Tribal peoples. Papers should reflect the values of respect, reciprocity, and partnership, and address the priorities, needs, and aspirations of Indigenous and Tribal peoples. The keywords below are indicative only and are intended to indicate the breadth of areas of interest for the Special Issue. We are particularly interested in strengths-based approaches, Indigenist research methodologies, multidisciplinary research, and research investigating structural and system level issues (including but not limited to racism and discrimination). While we welcome submissions about Indigenous and Tribal peoples in the lands now known as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the US, we strongly encourage work relating to Indigenous and Tribal peoples in other parts of the world.


All papers submitted for consideration should include a paragraph in the Methods section briefly detailing: (a) the nature of the engagement, involvement and leadership by Indigenous/Tribal people and communities in the project; (b) ethics and governance considerations in relation to Indigenous/Tribal peoples; and (c) whose priorities are reflected in the work.


We look forward to receiving your submissions.

 

Prof Joan Cunningham
A/Prof Lisa Whop
Dr Kalinda Griffiths
Dr Abbey Diaz

Keywords

  • Indigenous health and wellbeing
  • holistic health
  • equity, human rights, social justice, ethics
  • healthcare innovation, policy change, structural reform
  • prevention
  • workforce
  • cultural competence and cultural safety
  • self-determination and empowerment
  • consumer and community participation
  • community development
  • resilience
  • mental health
  • trauma, grief and loss
  • identity and identification
  • social inclusion
  • quality of life
  • Indigenous data governance and data sovereignty

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
How Neoliberalism Shapes Indigenous Oral Health Inequalities Globally: Examples from Five Countries
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(23), 8908; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17238908 - 30 Nov 2020
Abstract
Evidence suggests that countries with neoliberal political and economic philosophical underpinnings have greater health inequalities compared to less neoliberal countries. But few studies examine how neoliberalism specifically impacts health inequalities involving highly vulnerable populations, such as Indigenous groups. Even fewer take this perspective [...] Read more.
Evidence suggests that countries with neoliberal political and economic philosophical underpinnings have greater health inequalities compared to less neoliberal countries. But few studies examine how neoliberalism specifically impacts health inequalities involving highly vulnerable populations, such as Indigenous groups. Even fewer take this perspective from an oral health viewpoint. From a lens of indigenous groups in five countries (the United States, Canada, Australia, Aotearoa/New Zealand and Norway), this commentary provides critical insights of how neoliberalism, in domains including colonialism, racism, inter-generational trauma and health service provision, shapes oral health inequalities among Indigenous societies at a global level. We posit that all socially marginalised groups are disadvantaged under neoliberalism agendas, but that this is amplified among Indigenous groups because of ongoing legacies of colonialism, institutional racism and intergenerational trauma. Full article
Open AccessArticle
“Cultural Security Is an On-Going Journey…” Exploring Views from Staff Members on the Quality and Cultural Security of Services for Aboriginal Families in Western Australia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(22), 8480; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228480 - 16 Nov 2020
Abstract
Cultural security is a key element of accessible services for Indigenous peoples globally, although few studies have examined this empirically. We explored the scope, reach, quality, and cultural security of health and social services available to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander families in [...] Read more.
Cultural security is a key element of accessible services for Indigenous peoples globally, although few studies have examined this empirically. We explored the scope, reach, quality, and cultural security of health and social services available to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander families in Western Australia (WA), from the point of view of staff from the services. We recruited staff from health and social services for Aboriginal people in the Perth, Kalgoorlie, Great Southern, and South West regions of WA between December 2015 and September 2017 to complete online surveys. We examined the proportions of participants that responded saying the service was culturally secure, the reasons for the response, and perceived factors related to a high-quality service. Sixty participants from 21 services responded to the survey. Seventy-three percent stated the service was culturally secure; however, only 36% stated that the staff employed at the service had sufficient knowledge on cultural security. Participants suggested having Aboriginal staff and better cultural awareness training as methods to improve cultural security within the service. Participants highlighted that staffing, funding for resources, and patient financial difficulties in accessing care as key areas for quality improvement. Much greater effort is required in improving knowledge through on-going training of staff in the practice of culturally safe care. Organisations must also be required to meet specific standards in cultural safety. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Trauma and Violence Informed Care Through Decolonising Interagency Partnerships: A Complexity Case Study of Waminda’s Model of Systemic Decolonisation
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(20), 7363; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17207363 - 09 Oct 2020
Abstract
Through the lens of complexity, we present a nested case study describing a decolonisation approach developed and implemented by Waminda South Coast Women’s Health and Welfare Aboriginal Corporation. Using Indigenous research methods, this case study has unfolded across three phases: (1) Yarning interviews [...] Read more.
Through the lens of complexity, we present a nested case study describing a decolonisation approach developed and implemented by Waminda South Coast Women’s Health and Welfare Aboriginal Corporation. Using Indigenous research methods, this case study has unfolded across three phases: (1) Yarning interviews with the workforce from four partner health services (n = 24); (2) Yarning circle bringing together key informants from yarning interviews to verify and refine emerging themes (n = 14); (3) Semi-structured interviews with a facilitator of Waminda’s Decolonisation Workshop (n = 1) and participants (n = 10). Synthesis of data has been undertaken in stages through collaborative framework and thematic analysis. Three overarching themes and eight sub-themes emerged that centred on enhancing the capabilities of the workforce and strengthening interagency partnerships through a more meaningful connection and shared decolonisation agenda that centres Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and communities. Health and social services are complex systems that function within the context of colonisation. Waminda’s innovative, model of interagency collaboration enhanced workforce capability through shared language and collective learning around colonisation, racism and Whiteness. This process generated individual, organisational and systemic decolonisation to disable power structures through trauma and violence informed approach to practice. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
‘There’s a Wall There—And That Wall Is Higher from Our Side’: Drawing on Qualitative Interviews to Improve Indigenous Australians’ Experiences of Dental Health Services
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6496; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186496 - 07 Sep 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Indigenous Australians experience high levels of untreated dental disease compared to non-Indigenous Australians. We sought to gain insight into barriers that prevent Indigenous Australians from seeking timely and preventive dental care. A qualitative study design was implemented, using face-to-face interviews conducted December 2019 [...] Read more.
Indigenous Australians experience high levels of untreated dental disease compared to non-Indigenous Australians. We sought to gain insight into barriers that prevent Indigenous Australians from seeking timely and preventive dental care. A qualitative study design was implemented, using face-to-face interviews conducted December 2019 to February 2020. Participants were 20 Indigenous Australians (10 women and 10 men) representing six South Australian Indigenous groups; Ngarrindjeri, Narungga, Kaurna, Ngadjuri, Wiramu, and Adnyamathanha. Age range was middle-aged to elderly. The setting was participants’ homes or workplaces. The main outcome measures were barriers and enablers to accessing timely and appropriate dental care. The findings were broadly grouped into eight domains: (1) fear of dentists; (2) confusion regarding availability of dental services; (3) difficulties making dental appointments; (4) waiting times; (5) attitudes and empathy of dental health service staff; (6) cultural friendliness of dental health service space; (7) availability of public transport and parking costs; and (8) ease of access to dental clinic. The findings indicate that many of the barriers to Indigenous people accessing timely and appropriate dental care may be easily remedied. Cultural competency training enables barriers to timely access and provision of dental care to Indigenous Australians to be addressed. The findings provide important context to better enable health providers and policy makers to put in place appropriate measures to improve Indigenous people’s oral health, and the Indigenous oral health workforce in Australia. Full article
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