Flexible Career Pathways for the Aboriginal Health Workforce

The purpose of the project is to identify innovative strategies which will encourage greater participation by Aboriginal people in the health workforce. The strategies will be based around ‘flexible pathways’ into and through the workforce, allowing people to pursue jobs that are right for them, and to develop career paths that encourage continuing participation in the workforce.

Pathways for existing Aboriginal health staff into a wide suite of health professions and the value and development of allied or para-professional roles in what is widely acknowledged as the “new workforce” will form a key part of the research.

The research will

  • tell stories about individual journeys through the health workforce,
  • document previous and current attempts to develop formal pathways in Australia and elsewhere, and
  • imagine new structures and practices in collaboration with Aboriginal people and key stakeholders in the health service system.

The project team will interview past and present Aboriginal workers in health, employers, policy makers, professional colleagues, young Aboriginal people who may be considering a health career, and educators.

A key outcome of the project will be to encourage recognition of the valuable contributions Aboriginal people in the health workforce make to improving the health of Aboriginal communities in urban, rural and remote settings, and will propose opportunities for enhancing these contributions. The research will inform policy related to the structure and growth of the overall health workforce and Aboriginal employment.

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Created: 25 September 2012 - Updated: 17 July 2013