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Closing the Gap

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Closing the Gap

Meet Jordan Casey, the Manager of Aboriginal Health, Policy and Planning at Western Health. He also overseas Wilim Berrbang, the Aboriginal Health Unit based at Sunshine Hospital. The name of the unit means Place of Connection in Woi-wurrung language.   

What is Wilim Berrbang and how does it support First Nations patients and their families?  

Wilim Berrbang offers support services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients and their families, we also provide support to patients who attend outpatient clinics, as well as Hospital in the Home Services. We offer referral pathways and provide social, emotional and cultural support for First Nations families while they are in our care, and we act as a liaison point between the patients and their families and the treating teams.   

Our Koori Maternity Service provides support to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and babies.  

What does Closing the Gap mean to you?  

The Closing the Gap strategy, set out by the Federal Government, aims to improve the outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. 

There are 17 key targets in the National Closing the Gap Agreement and a lot of these focus on improving educational and health outcomes of First Nations people, such as: increasing the average life expectancy, improving birth outcomes, and creating and maintaining educational pathways for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.  

Health Services like ours plays a critical role in both improving the health and educational outcomes of our community.   

What motivates you to work in this area of healthcare?  

I previously worked at Northern Health as an Aboriginal Hospital Liaison Officer and as a Koori Mental Health Liaison Officer at NorthWestern Mental Health. 

I can see the health disadvantages in our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community and I wanted to work in a space that could make a real difference to patients and their families when they need us the most.   

What are the highlights for you during your first six months at Western Health?  

I like working with a close tight team who are committed to improving health outcomes for our community and being able to see the positive outcomes that we've achieved. 

In the past six months the team won the Victorian Public Health Care Award for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Outpatient Clinic. I was also pleased to launch the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Safety Plan 2022-2025.  

Read more about the steps we are taking to improve outcomes for our First Nations people in Western Health’s Cultural Safety Plan 2022-2025