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ABORIGINAL DEMENTIA RATES HEIGHTENED BY RACISM

Posted by PeterLain 
ABORIGINAL DEMENTIA RATES HEIGHTENED BY RACISM
March 23, 2012 09:42PM
ABORIGINAL DEMENTIA RATES HEIGHTENED BY RACISM
[www.abc.net.au]
By Jessica Tapp

Posted March 23, 2012 16:18:47
Coffs Harbour 2450

A professor from Neuroscience Research Australia says discrimination and a lack of opportunity are contributing to a higher dementia rate in Aboriginal communities.

Researcher Tony Broe has launched the Koori Dementia Care Project in Coffs Harbour.

The project is based on studies of Aboriginal communities throughout Sydney and the mid north coast.

It will be rolled out in La Perouse, Campbelltown and Western Sydney, and in Kempsey, Coffs Harbour and Nambucca.

Professor Broe says their research shows lifelong health problems and a lack of awareness mean Aboriginal people are five times more likely to get dementia.

"The big things that need to be done I think are education, training, jobs and then health care.

"And the important blocks are still existing subtle discrimination and lack of opportunity for jobs and for education so that's where we're aiming," he said.

Professor Broe says he hopes the program will raise awareness about dementia in all New South Wales Aboriginal communities.

"Aboriginal people do not have the same knowledge about dementia as the rest of the community because it hasn't been something that's seen as high priority.

"So the first step is to build capacity in the community and in the Aboriginal service providers.

"That should translate into better Aboriginal controlled services and better access to mainstream services," he said.



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