Post-implementation review of Country Health SA’s Aboriginal Community & Consumer Engagement Strategy
Country Health SA released its Aboriginal Community & Consumer Engagement Strategy in May 2015. Our review examined the initial implementation of the Strategy to report on how well it has been achieving its intended outcomes and give advice on what we have found ought to be done to improve the chances of achieving its intended outcomes over the longer term. With the imminent devolution of functions from Country Health to a set of six new local health networks for country South Australia, our report is also a timely evidence base to help the new health networks meet their statutory obligations to develop consumer and community engagement strategies.
Written for us by an expert Aboriginal writer with significant experience of South Australia and its health system, our community edition is a concise, easy to read summary of the key findings and advice in our full technical report.
The full technical edition of our final report was published on 31 January 2019. Download a copy now (PDF, 3.6MB).
On 7 March 2019, Hon Stephen Wade MLC, Minister for Health and Wellbeing, wrote to us with a response to the report.
Further resources from our review
On 18 September 2019, we presented a paper on the project to the International Evaluation Conference in Sydney.
Draft findings feedback and validation session
On Friday 05 October 2018, we held a community validation event to share draft findings of our review with stakeholders and provide an opportunity for feedback and discussion. We are grateful to all those who were able to attend and are pleased to make the materials available to everyone who could not join us on the day.
Klynton Wanganeen’s video segment
This video segment, shown at slide 61 in the presentation, is a personal point of view from Klynton Wanganeen, who was involved in the review. Watch the clip here via YouTube (3min, 33sec).
Questions and discussion
A summary of the question and discussion session with participants at the webinar.
Most of the discussion among participants was around the devolution, from July 2019, of functions of Country Health onto the six new Local Health Networks that are being set up for country South Australia. Management and operation of the Experts by Experience register will be spread amongst the regions as part of this decentralisation process.
It was suggested that there should be expressly identified positions on the boards for Aboriginal expertise to be properly incorporated into the Boards’ decision-making processes, although it was noted on this matter that the legislation does require at least one member of each Board to ‘be a person who has expertise, knowledge or experience in relation to Aboriginal health’#.
Participants suggested that the findings from our review would be of interest to the new Local Health Networks in fulfilling their duties. We understand that staff in Country Health are looking to inform the new Boards about the Strategy and this review, and we expect that our final report for the review will include recommendations strongly encouraging and highlighting the need for this Strategy to continue to be applied after the devolution.
We also heard that the use of the term ‘cultural competency’ is deprecated, especially when used in a context where it might be taken as implying a measure of someone’s competency in their own culture. More modern terminology therefore differs, for instance, the staff training programme in Country Health is referred to as a ‘cultural learning framework’.
There was also some discussion on the fact, as was highlighted in the webinar, that less than 1% of all Country Health staff responded to the survey for the data collection for this review, although it is fair to note that response rates were rather higher than that for the separate surveys for executives and Aboriginal staff. It cannot be known exactly why so few staff overall chose to complete the survey, but there was consensus amongst webinar participants that it at least partly indicated and underlined an institutional cultural issue around Aboriginal affairs.
We appointed PwC’s Indigenous Consulting†, a majority Aboriginal-owned and operated firm, as the review’s data collection contractor, with a remit to undertake a desktop review and to run a set of stakeholder surveys and face-to-face focus group sessions.
We incorporated findings from the contractor into our final report but, for completeness, the contractor’s preliminary and post-collection reports are available for download:
- Desktop review report (PDF, 2.1MB)
- Post-collection report (full) (PDF, 9.3MB)
- Post-collection report (summary) (PDF, 2.1MB)
# s. 33B(4), Health Care Act 2008, as had been at the date of the webinar prospectively to be amended by the coming into force in July 2019 of s. 11 Health Care (Governance) Amendment Act 2018
† PwC’s Indigenous Consulting is a trading name of Pricewaterhousecoopers Indigenous Consulting Pty Ltd