Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that this website may contain images and names of people who have since passed away.
The NHLF acknowledges the Traditional Custodians across the lands, waters and seas that we work and live on and pay our respects
to Elders past, present and future and thank them for their continuing custodianship.

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Welcome
to the NHLF

Leading Aboriginal & Torres
Strait Islander healthcare.

About the NHLF

The National Health Leadership Forum (NHLF) is a collective partnership of national organisationswhorepresent a united voice on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and well-being with expertise  in health policy and program development, service delivery,  professional practice, workforce, research, healing and mental health and social and emotional well-being.

The social determinants and cultural determinants of health underpin much of the policy promotion and developmental work of the NHLF along with justice and climate as they impact on health and well-being. Health is a noted human right, it is an underpinning to everyday life, and key factor in economic (and environmental) sustainability.

The NHLF was instrumental in the formation of the Close the Gap Campaign and continues to lead the Campaign as the senior collective of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health leadership. Committed to achieving health equality, the NHLF draws strength from cultural integrity, the evidence base and community.

The NHLF provides advice and direction to the Australian governments on the development and implementation of informed policy and program objectives that contribute to improved and equitable health and life outcomes, and the cultural well-being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The NHLF shares a collective responsibility for the future generations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and we pay our respect to our Elders and Warriors who came before us. Our vision is for the Australian health system to be free of racism and with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people leading and determining their own solutions that are culturally informed and governed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities. This Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander way of working can improve access to culturally safe and responsive health care services that are effective, high quality, appropriate and affordable.

Our Vision

Our vision is for the Australian health system to be free of racism and with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people leading and determining their own solutions that are culturally informed and governed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities. This Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander way of working can improve access to culturally safe and responsive health care services that are effective, high quality, appropriate and affordable.

Our Purpose

Collectively represent a united voice on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing with expertise across service delivery, workforce, research, healing and mental health and social and emotional wellbeing.

Provide the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health leadership on the Close the Gap Campaign Steering Committee (CtG SC).

Operate as a partnership mechanism to hold governments to account in the identification, development, implementation and monitoring of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health policy and programs.

Seek genuine engagement with the Australian governments, and relevant non-government stakeholders as this adds significant value to decision-making and to shaping policy and program design in relation to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and well-being outcomes.

Operate as a partnership mechanism to engage and work with communities and agencies in relation to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health policy and health and well-being outcomes.

Foster multi-party commitments on culturally informed and safe approaches to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health services and programs.

Our Guiding Principles

The NHLF, in all its work and deliberations as senior Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health leaders, is guided by the following principles:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander concepts of health and concepts of wellbeing and mental health;
  • Informed, connected and representative;
  • Empowerment and self-determination (nation building);
  • Provide strategic advice, leadership and Indigenous knowledge from a strength-based position;
  • Unity whilst recognising autonomy;
  • Mutual regard and respect for each other’s unique contributions by valuing diversity;
  • Cultural safety;
  • Continuous quality improvement, best practice and evidence-based; and
  • Transparent, open and willing to share information.

History of the NHLF

The leadership for the Close the Gap Campaign is through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander member organisations on the Campaign’s Steering Committee. The Close the Gap Campaign Steering Committee held its first meeting in March 2006.

This leadership group was the precursor for the establishment of the National Health Leadership Forum (NHLF) in August 2011.

The Australian Human Rights Commission previously provided secretariat support for the NHLF as they also provided secretariat support to the Close the Gap Campaign. The Commonwealth Department of Health provided funding support.

The NHLF secretariat separated from the Australian Human Rights Commission in 2019 with funding from the Department of Health provided to one of the incorporated members of the NHLF. Indigenous Allied Health Australia is the current host of the secretariat.

The NHLF has become an influential collective of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health leadership and together advocate for the rights to health for our peoples. In addition to being part of the Indigenous leadership group for the Close the Gap Campaign, members are also part of the Coalition of Peaks, for the National Agreement on Closing the Gap.

The NHLF were intrinsically involved in the development of the 2013-2023 and 2021-2031 National Aboriginal and Torre Strait Islander Health Plan. NHLF members were also part of the Project Reference Group that developed the first ever 2021-2031 National Workforce Plan (formally called National Aboriginal and Torre Strait Islander Health Workforce Strategic Framework and Implementation Plan).

The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) was a foundational member of the NHLF, but in 2021 withdrew from the NHLF due to their leadership role in the Coalition of Peaks and the within the Partnership with Australian governments that oversees the National Agreement on Closing the Gap.

The Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association currently (March 2022-2024) holds the Chair position.

Image: NHLF members 2016





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Contact us:

Address:
ALIA House
Ground Floor, 9-11 Napier Close,
Deakin West, ACT 2600

PO Box 323, Deakin ACT 2600.

 

Email: 
admin@nhlf.org.au

Phone: 
+61 2 6285 1010

Disclaimer:
This website was funded by the Australian Government Department of Health. The views expressed on the website do not necessarily represent the position of the Australian Government.