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CRCATSIH Program: Healthy Start, Healthy Life

Program leader: Gail Garvey
Program manager: Liz Izquierdo

Goal: To enhance the effective implementation of techniques, tools and resources that will support the users of research to deliver primary care that reduces risk, promotes health and provides best practice in the prevention, early detection and management of chronic illness.

What’s the program about?Healthy Start Health Life Program Poster

‘Healthy Start, Healthy Life’ is focused on improving the delivery of health care to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The program aims to develop knowledge and evaluate tools and resources to reduce risk, promote health and support best practice in the prevention, early detection and management of chronic illness. Research supported by our predecessor organisation, the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health, has established that chronic conditions – such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease – account for 70 per cent of the health gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians.[1]

As well as supporting the development of new approaches to tackle chronic illness across the life-cycle, Program 1 aims to find ways to make the transition of an innovation from research into widespread practice as straightforward and rapid as possible.

Download Program 1 poster (Nov 2011)
Download Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women's Health at the Lowitja Institute poster, presented on 25 October at the National Indigenous Womenb's Health Workshop, Melbourne


Priority areas include:

  • Reducing the incidence of chronic illness, e.g. through encouraging better nutrition and greater exercise.
  • Lowering the risk associated with tobacco consumption.
  • Improving the early detection and effective management of chronic illness.
  • Delivering better maternal and child health outcomes.


Program research activities involve collaborations with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community controlled health care providers. The Lowitja Institute also plays a general brokerage role for mainstream health organisations wishing to partner with community controlled health care providers, either in research or in the delivery of services.


Call for expressions of interest:

Impact and evaluation of resources that enhance end-user utilisation of interventions
Closing date: Friday 15 March 2013

Active projects

Completed projects


1. T. Vos, B. Barker, L. Stanley & A. Lopez 2003, The Burden of Disease and Injury in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, University of Queensland, Brisbane.

Created: 03 May 2012 - Updated: 23 March 2015