AIHW news

Launching the fourth AIHW Indigenous eye health measures report

The article was originally posted on LinkedIn by Barry Sandison, AIHW CEO.

I’m very pleased to announce the fourth annual report of Indigenous eye health measures 2020, launched virtually today by the Hon. Greg Hunt MP, Minister for Health.

Since it was first published in 2017, the report has been a significant tool to monitor progress in driving down rates of preventable vision loss for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and in improving their eye health.

The report reveals there have been substantial improvements in the rate of Indigenous Australians accessing cataract surgery, diabetic retinopathy screening and eye health exams.

The report’s evidence-based insights help to maintain a strong focus on the gains made and on areas where improvement is still needed, either nationally or in specific regions.

Ongoing monitoring will be important to better understand changes in the eye health of Indigenous Australians, their access to and use of eye health services, and to identity gaps in service delivery.

While the data in today’s report are for time periods before the COVID-19 pandemic, over time and as more recent data become available, the impact of the pandemic on the measures used to monitor eye health for Indigenous Australians will be assessed.

We are pleased to help contribute to one of the key targets for improved health outcomes under the Australian Government’s Indigenous Preventive Health Plan – ending avoidable blindness in Indigenous communities by 2025.

Congratulations to all those involved in the production and launch of today’s report and thank you again to our three speakers, Minister Hunt, Professor Hugh Taylor AC and Associate Professor Kris Rallah-Baker.

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