Cultural safety and maternity care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians

Sue Kruske, S KILDEA, Lesley Barclay

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    Abstract

    Purpose: To discuss cultural safety and critique the provision of culturally appropriate maternity services to remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in Australia. 

    Procedure: The literature and policies around 'culture' and 'cultural safety' are discussed and applied to the provision of maternity services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in remote areas of Australia. 

    Findings: The current provision of maternity services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, particularly those living in remote Australia, appears largely inadequate. The provision of culturally safe maternity care requires health system reform at all levels including: the individual practitioner response; the educational preparation of practitioners; the delivery of maternity services and the development of policy at local, state and national level. This paper considers the changes that can be made from the individual practitioner through to the design and implementation of maternity services. 

    Principal conclusions: Cultural safety provides a useful framework to improve the delivery of maternity services to remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their families. 
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)73-77
    Number of pages5
    JournalWomen and Birth
    Volume19
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 2006

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