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5 - 7 December 2023   |   The Langham, Naarm/Melbourne

Improving First Nations health outcomes by connecting community with a skilled and supported workforce

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Welcome to the Closing the Gap on Indigenous Health Forum

The 2023 Closing the Gap on Indigenous Health Forum will connect Indigenous community healthcare leaders to healthcare models that place First Nations staff, culture, and community at the centre of practice.  


This year will focus on the incredible people that make up the Indigenous health workforce, as well as their solutions to strengthening Indigenous health employment. 


The Forum is an important opportunity to yarn with your peers about the services, programs and practices that are working in their communities, including innovative approaches to health program design, community-led research, and evidence-based practice.    

Silver Partner

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Exhibition Partners

Featured Speakers

Jenny Ockwell (woman on right but if possible to get both faces in she would like that)_ed

Jenny Ockwell

Chief Executive Officer

Dandenong & Districts Aborigines Co-Operative Limited

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Glenn Pearson

Director of First Nations Strategy and Leadership

Telethon Kids Institute

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Geoffrey Winters

Chief Executive Officer

Just ReInvest NSW

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Paula Morgan

Chief Executive Officer

Lakes Entrance Aboriginal Health Association

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Nadene Edmonds

First Nations Advisor

The Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators 

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Suzanne Naden

Chief Executive Officer


Post-Forum Workshop (7 December)

Fostering constructive collaboration and partnerships between community-controlled health organisations, mainstream health organisations, and government bodies

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Johnathan Link
Deadly Thinking

Johnathan Link will guide you through how to improve collaboration between the community-controlled sector and the mainstream health sector in the design, delivery and implementation of health services for First Nations communities.


Regardless of which sector you belong to, this workshop will equip you with the knowledge to build beneficial partnerships that provide opportunities for upskilling and development of the First Nations health workforce, expand your organisation’s reach within communities, and improve culturally safe service delivery to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Learning Objectives: 


  • Achieve genuine collaboration in the design, delivery and implementation of health services for First Nations communities using Gold Coast Health’s First Nations Equity Strategy as a model  

  • Develop and upskill First Nations health workforces across the community controlled and mainstream sectors  

  • Understand the potential benefits and outcomes of partnerships and collaborations using the Gold Coast Men’s Wellbeing Workshop as a case study


Yarn with your peers about the services, programs and practices that are working in their communities, including innovative approaches to...

Community-led research

Evidence-based practice

Health program design

Who Should Attend?

If you are a First Nations employee working in an NFP or charity with 10 or less staff, or if you are a First Nations Elder or young person, you can apply for a bursary to cover your registration fee. To do so, submit an application to, detailing why you are applying and how it will help you. Learn more.

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Why Attend?


Maximise the effectiveness of grant applications and learn where and how to access funding


Identify what supportive partnerships between ACCHOs, AMSs, PHNs and hospitals look like and how to build them


Feel inspired by positive case studies from Aboriginal Medical Services that are successfully retaining a skilled workforce and expanding their community services


Hear the experiences of ACCHOs in implementing digital and virtual healthcare solutions in their communities


Discover healthy lifestyle choices in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to eliminate preventable diseases


Hear about the status of RHD research and learn what needs to be implemented to eliminate RHD in communities


Gain insight into the healthcare strategies of peak bodies


Yarn and network with your peers in the healthcare sector from across Australia

“This event enabled me to broaden my understanding of the barriers to, and the rewards of, providing better service delivery to communities that makes a positive change to closing the gap in First Nations peoples' wellness.” 

Primary Health Care Educator, Apunipima Cape York Health Council Limited

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The Langham, Melbourne

Address: One Southgate Avenue, Southbank, VIC 3006

Conference Room: Clarendon Ballroom

Workshop: Swanston Rooms


Parking: We recommend that the delegates self-park in Wilson’s Car park located under the hotel. Entry is via Southgate Avenue or City Road. Current rates can be found here.


Accommodation: The Langham, Melbourne is offering delegates 10% off the best available flexible rate. Please click on the booking link to select room type and inclusions.


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