RACS Supports National Reconciliation Week 2024

NRW has been commemorated annually since 1996 and commemorates the anniversary of the 1967 referendum to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the Australian Constitution. This year, NRW runs from 27 May to 3 June.

NRW is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to reconciliation in Australia.

RACS’ commitment to advancing health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities is driven through our Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan. This is a strategic framework outlining our vision for reconciliation, where there are no health discrepancies between the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous populations of Australia. Our aims are that:

• the rate of infant mortality should not differ
• there should be no significant discrepancy in life expectancy
• the overall rates of disease and sickness should not differ significantly
• the rates of injury should not differ significantly
• there should be equity of access to medical and allied health services, including primary care, surgical and other hospital care, as well as after-hospital care
• there should be improvements in the social determinants of health to enable equity in health outcomes.

Another way RACS celebrates and recognises the achievements of Indigenous surgeons is through Indigenous Scholarships and Awards, many of which are awarded at the RACS Annual Scientific Congress (ASC). These awards are aimed at prevocational doctors interested in surgery in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand. The 2024 ASC took place in Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand from 6-10 May, where RACS honoured contributions to Indigenous health and showcased the vital work that is being done in this space.

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