Policy Knowledge Exchange in action

SDOHA Conference 7 May 2015
L-R: T Calma AO, C MacDougall, M Moore, D McDermott, F Baum, M Fisher, C Phillips

The Southgate Institute for Health, Society and Equity held a highly successful policy knowledge exchange symposium in Canberra on Thursday 7th May, with over 100 people in attendance; many from within government or from NGOs actively involved in health policy issues. The event was held with the national Social Determinants of Health Alliance and focused on key policy messages arising from Southgate’s 3-year project on ‘Social determinants of health and equity in Australian health policy’, funded by the ARC. The day included a panel with senior policy figures, who responded to the presentations and discussed ways in which health policy could take greater account of social determinants of health (SDH).

The panel included Prof Tom Calma AO – former Social Justice Commissioner, Chancellor of the University of Canberra, and Coordinator of the national Tackling Indigenous Smoking program, Mr Stephen Jones MP – Shadow Assistant Minister for Health, ALP, Ms Tony Carmichael – Executive Director of Strategic Planning with the ACT Environment and Planning Directorate, and Mr Michael Moore – CEO of the Public Health Association of Australia.

Research team members from Southgate Institute and the Poche Centre for Indigenous Health and Wellbeing at Flinders University presented key messages for policy makers from the research:

  • How Australian health policy does and doesn’t address SDH and health equity
  • How and why SDH successfully got on the policy agenda in development of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-23
  • Facilitators and barriers for action on SDH in development of policies on child and youth health
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