Medical services slammed

September 18, 1991

Medical services slammed

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — The Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission has criticised medical services for Aboriginal communities in north Queensland as "inadequate and culturally inappropriate", in a report tabled in federal parliament on September 12.

An inquiry by the commission into medical services at Hopevale, Wujal Wujal and Cooktown recommended that funds be allocated urgently to improve services for the three communities, with a total population of 3000. The health of the communities had suffered because of "a legacy of dispossession, poverty and racism".

Hopevale Aboriginal Council community development officer Gwen Deemal-Hall said that people were dying because of a lack of all-weather road access to the Cooktown Hospital.

Deemal-Hall said she was "quite reserved" about the findings of the inquiry because little had been done about the findings of the Aboriginal deaths in custody inquiry. n

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