Review of cardiovascular health among Indigenous Australians

C. Gray, Alex Brown, N Thomson

Research output: Other contributionpeer-review


This review of the cardiovascular health of Indigenous people
has been prepared by the Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet
as a part of our efforts to contribute to ‘closing the gap’ in health
between Indigenous people and other Australians by making
relevant, high quality knowledge and information easily accessible
to policy makers, health service providers, program managers,
clinicians, researchers and the general community. The review
is an example of the HealthInfoNet’s translational research [1],
defined as ‘comprehensive applied research that strives to translate the available knowledge and render it operational’.

The main purpose of the review, which follows the model of
narrative reviews/syntheses [3], is to provide a comprehensive,
authoritative, up-to-date review of the cardiovascular health of
Indigenous people that (1) is a valuable up-to-date overview for
people working in the area; and (2) assists in the development/
refinement of policies, strategies and programs.

Research for the review involves the collection, collation, and
analysis of a wide range of relevant information, including both
published and unpublished material. Sources include government
reports, particularly those produced by the Australian Bureau
of Statistics (ABS), the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
(AIHW) and the Steering Committee for the Review of Government
Service Provision (SCRGSP). As well as the regular ABS and AIHW
publications, this review draws on the reports in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health performance framework series. These reports, prepared by the AIHW for the Australian Department of Health and Ageing in 2006, 2008 and 2011, are accompanied by substantial detailed analyses. The review also draws on information from the main administrative data collections (such as the death
registration system and the hospital inpatient collections) and
national surveys.

After providing the context of Indigenous cardiovascular, the body of review outlines the extent of cardiovascular disease among Indigenous people (including attention to the major conditions), provides an overview of the various contributing factors, considers management, prevention and rehabilitation, summarises a number of relevant policies and strategies, and provides some brief concluding comments. Rather than commence with an executive summary, the review is preceded by a section devoted to ‘Key facts’, which presents the summarised information in a more concise form.

Further information about the cardiovascular health of Indigenous
people is accessible from the relevant section of HealthInfoNet’s
website (, which provides access
to: the complete Indigenous-specific literature; details of policies
and strategies, programs and projects, and organisations involved
in the area; and databases of health promotion and health practice resources. The section also contains a plain language version of this review.
Original languageEnglish
TypeAustralian Indigenous HealthReviews
Media of outputFrom the Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet
Publisher Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet
Number of pages36
Publication statusPublished or Issued - Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes

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