Census data and local partnerships promote health in Orange NSW
It’s Men’s Health Week, and with just under two months until the 2021 Census, it’s an opportunity to highlight the importance of Census data to community organisations like Orange Aboriginal Medical Services (OAMS).
OAMS uses Census data to improve access to health services in the regional town of Orange, NSW.
Last year OAMS opened the Walu-Win Centre, which combines holistic and traditional medical practices to improve health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
Jamie Newman, proud Wiradjuri man and OAMS’ Chief Executive Officer, said Census data helped in understanding the needs of the local community and securing further investment from partners.
OAMS combined Census data with other local data to build a profile of the region, helping it to understand what was needed in the local community.
‘Improving access to health services through Walu-Win, and a more holistic and wellbeing focus is vital to closing the gap. We can’t close the gap without focusing on wellbeing for our people,’ Jamie said.
Adrian Dodson-Shaw, a proud Yawuru, Arrernte and Kaytetye man and Assistant Director at the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Centre for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics, said Men’s Health Week is also an opportunity to highlight the new Census question on long-term health conditions.
For the first time, the Census will collect information about the prevalence of health conditions such as heart disease, arthritis and diabetes.
‘The data gathered from this will provide vital health information, particularly at the regional and local level. This will help inform health policy and planning for local health and community services like OAMS.
‘With two months to go until the Census, OAMS is a great example of why it’s so important everyone in the community participates. Getting everyone to participate means we can get the right services in place,’ Adrian said.
The next Census is on Tuesday 10 August. Instructions on how to participate will be sent to households in early August.
For more information visit www.census.abs.gov.au.
What is the Census?
The Census, held on Tuesday 10 August 2021, is a snapshot of who we are and tells the story of how we are changing. It is one of the largest and most important statistical collections undertaken by the ABS.
How will people complete their Census?
People will be able to complete the Census online, on their mobile device or on paper.
A number of options will be available for people who need assistance to complete their Census form including help from Census staff, and phone and online help.
Census staff will be in remote communities to help people complete the Census during July and August.
What is new with the Census?
People can complete their Census as soon as they receive their instructions if they know where they’ll be on 10 August. They don’t have to wait until Census night.
There are two new questions in the 2021 Census – the first changes to questions collected since 2006. The new questions are on long-term health conditions, such as arthritis and diabetes, and on defence force participation.
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