The concept of social and emotional wellbeing that underpins the analyses in this Report attempts to capture an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander holistic and whole-of-life view of health. It includes mental health, but also considers the impact of other factors on emotional well being, such as life stressors, removal from family, discrimination and cultural identification.
Until recently, the majority of national data on the social and emotional wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders centred on the use of mental health services. The interim social and emotional wellbeing module was developed to collect national data on this topic in the 2004–05 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey (NATSIHS).
The interim module has eight domains—psychological distress, impact of psychological distress, positive wellbeing, anger, life stressors, discrimination, cultural identification and removal from natural family.
This report provides current national data on the social and emotional wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, reviews the effectiveness of the interim social and emotional wellbeing module, and makes recommendations for improving measures of social and emotional wellbeing.