An exciting follow-on project from Marulu and the Lililwan Project is being conducted in the Fitzroy Valley, Western Australia. Having instigated the changes in alcohol sales in their community, members of the team at Nindilingarri Cultural Health Services (Fitzroy Crossing) are working with others from Sydney Medical School and the George Institute and their supporters on the Liliwan project, the first Australian study of the prevalence of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD).  A series of online modules for learning about Australian Aboriginal child health have been created.

Examples and case studies drawn from the Fitzroy Valley and urban communities will be used to facilitate learning in four online modules:

Module 1: Joining the dots: Aiming for cultural competence
Cultural competency training based on Aboriginal communities in general, with a specific example from the Fitzroy Valley

Module 2: Resilience and risks: Social determinants of Aboriginal child health    
Exploration of the social determinants of Aboriginal child health; past, present and future, using North American and Australian examples

Module 3: What’s up, doc? Common and important disease
Common and important diseases (respiratory, Ear Nose and Throat, skin, eye) including rheumatic heart disease and post-infectious glomerulonephritis

Module 4: Worrying developments: Determinants of child development
Factors impacting on child behaviour and cognitive development including Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, and the effects of early life trauma (adverse social, nutritional and emotional experiences) on child development

Modules 1 and 2 use video and audio material from the Fitzroy Valley and other areas to promote reflection and participation in facilitated online discussion forums. For Modules 3 and 4, interactive case-based discussions with relevant clinical images and reference material provide opportunities for varying levels of engagement with topics.

The modules will go live for learning by Fellows and trainees of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) and staff of Aboriginal Health Services in September this year. It will also be made available through the planned Indigenous Health and Cultural Competency Online Portal to be hosted by the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS).

The Modules Project has been developed in partnership with Nindilingarri Cultural Health Services. It has been funded by the Department of Health and Ageing under the Rural Health Continuing Education Sub-program (RHCE) Stream One, which is managed by the Committee of Presidents of Medical Colleges. The RACP is solely responsible for the content of, and views expressed in, any material associated with this Project. It is also supported by an RACP Continuing professional development grant and the Poche Foundation of the University of Sydney. 

For further information please contact Megan Phelps at the Children’s Hospital at Westmead Clinical School on E: