Improving food security for Indigenous Australians in remote areas

Madeline attended the 71st World Health Assembly in Geneva in 2018. She is currently studying a Bachelor of Medicine and a Bachelor of Surgery at Curtin University.

Abstract

Inadequate food security is a significant contributing factor in poor health-related outcomes for Indigenous Australians living in remote areas within Australia. In order to alleviate this issue, two recommendations are proposed.  The first offers a solution to the issues of cost and supply of fresh fruit and vegetables through the establishment of a body of hydroponic greenhouses in remote Australia. The second deals with issues of demand for fresh fruit and vegetables by providing a comprehensive education program on healthy eating. Together, these recommendations aim to empower Indigenous Australians living in remote areas to make healthy food choices and ultimately, decrease the rate of diet-related Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in this population. 

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Non-Communicable Diseases – the Silent Killer: Diagnosis, Risks and Management Evaluation

By Bronte Greer

Bronte attended the 2015 World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) Annual Meetings in Peru. 

Abstract

By 2030 three quarters of global deaths will be attributed to noncommunicable diseases (NCDs).[1] These diseases not only have significant impact on countries social construct but are expected to cause the global economy an economic output loss of $47 trillion over two decades.[2] The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified five main NCDs, these are (1) Cancer, (2) Diabetes, (3) Cardiovascular Disease, (4) Chronic Respiratory Disease and (5) Mental Illness. Further, WHO and other global institutions such as the World Bank and United Nations have further identified that the there are four main behavioural and environmental factors that significantly increase the risk of NCDs. These are (1) tobacco use, (2) abusive alcohol consumption, (3) physical inactivity and (4) poor diet. Previously, NCDs were seen as diseases of influence, but trends globally demonstrate that these diseases are having a severe impact on low-middle income countries. Whilst discussion has increased and recognition of their severity has been understood, frameworks have failed to understand cultural factors and country capabilities. These omissions have ultimately impacted success in decreasing NCDs. This paper has analysed how previous frameworks such as the Millennium Development Goals have attempted but arguably failed in addressing NCDs.  Further, analysis has been conducted to gage if success of reducing and managing NCDs through the proposed Sustainable Development Goals is likely in their present state. This paper has a role in extrapolating the importance and role both the World Bank and Australia have in securing sustainable change in how NCDs are prevent and managed. Combatting the increase in NCDs requires practical and community-based steps such as increased training for nurses’ support in implementing proven frameworks and initiating a collaborative partnership with global institutions. However it is realised that foreign aid budgets are limited, it is therefore recommended that the Australian initiate and evaluate foreign aid programs and direct more funds towards NCDs.

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