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Continuous Quality Improvement

Continuous Quality Improvement

Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) refers to a system of regular reflection and refinement to improve processes and outcomes that will provide quality health care. An increased focus on integrating CQI into the operations of primary health care providers to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people has been shown to yield substantial benefits.

'Smoke-busters': Maningrida’s experience implementing a tobacco control program

Tobacco is a major cause of the gap in life expectancybetween Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians [1]. Smoking prevalence in remote Aboriginal communities is several times higher than the national average [2] and has not declined over recent decades - suggesting that mainstream health promotion campaigns have been ineffective in this challenging setting. Following a community outreach program of Adult Health Checks, tobacco control was identified as a major priority to improve the health of people in Maningrida.

A Collaborative Cardiovascular Health Program for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People in the Goulburn–Murray Region: Development and risk factor screening at Indigenous community organisations

The Heart Health Project was developed in partnership between Aboriginal health and social organisations in the Goulburn-Murray region and university departments. The aims included screening for cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors, and evaluating community-directed interventions. We describe the development of the Heart Health Project and the results of risk factor screening among employees (n=66) of Aboriginal organisations during 2003-04.

A Longitudinal Data Resource on Key Influences on Health in the Northern Territory: Opportunities and Obstacles

The role of social factors in contributing to the poor health status of Aboriginal people living in the Northern Territory is widely accepted, but not well understood. This project aimed to address this situation by providing a strong evidence base to support the development and implementation of policies that improve the social health of Aboriginal communities in the NT over the long term. As part of the project researchers developed a series of consistent indicators with standardised data definitions to measure the effectiveness of primary health care services. The project was also informed by a number of data-related projects undertaken through the Northern Territory-based Menzies School of Health Research (MSHR) and the CRC for Aboriginal Health, including specifically a project on the socio-economic and environmental determinants of health in Aboriginal communities in the NT (NT SEEDH – Stevens).

A structured systems approach to improving health promotion practice for chronic disease in Indigenous communities

This research explores the feasibility of quality improvement methods for health promotion by investigating the impact of a continuous quality improvement intervention, similar to the model used in the ABCD (Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease) Project. While the ABCD Project has a clinical focus, this research will develop and test a number of tools and a range of strategies relevant to quality improvement for health promotion.

ABCD (Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease)

This continuous quality improvement (CQI) project aims to enhance health outcomes by assisting Indigenous primary health care centres to improve their systems for delivery of best practice care.

ABCDE project achievements

A final report on the work and outcomes of the Audit and Best Practice in Chronic Disease (ABCD) Extension project is about to be published, providing a comprehensive analysis of one of the most significant research efforts ever undertaken by our predecessor, the CRC for Aboriginal Health.

The report will be disseminated to participating health centres, government agencies and Lowitja Institute stakeholders, and will shortly be available for download from our website, along with a Policy Brief summarising the report’s key findings.

Achievements in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health: Final report, volume 1

This paper reviews the effectiveness of Aboriginal health care programs, and identifies the programs and strategies that appear to work. The authors use a process of literature review and a focus on specific projects in each Australian jurisdiction to achieve their aim. Although much of the literature is found to be inconclusive and key health indicators appear to show little improvement in the health of Indigenous Australians, the paper identifies improvements in underlying health infrastructure and an encouraging increase in government commitment to dealing with the problem.

Agreement between a Brief Food Frequency Questionnaire and Diet Records Using Two Statistical Methods


To compare intra- and inter-method reliability of a semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) designed specifically to measure beta carotene (BC) and retinol intake, using two methods - the limits of agreement (LOA) and the correlation coefficient. DESIGN: A cross-sectional study of dietary intake. SETTING: A randomized trial of vitamin A supplements in 2769 subjects with past asbestos exposure. SUBJECTS: Data from 57 men and 26 women, aged 28-72 years, living in Western Australia.

An Aboriginal family and community healing program in metropolitan Adelaide: Description and evaluation

This paper describes and evaluates the process, impacts and outcomes of an Aboriginal Family and Community Healing (AFCH) Program based in metropolitan Adelaide, South Australia. The evaluation used participatory action oriented methodology, mixed methods and multiple data sources. The AFCH comprised complex and dynamic activities for Aboriginal men, women and youth built around community engagement, and hosted by the regional primary health care Aboriginal outreach service.

An Audit of INR Control in the Australian Indigenous Setting


Warfarin management can be difficult; many factors can impact on INR control with some factors being unique to the Australian indigenous setting.


An audit at an urban Aboriginal community controlled health service calculated the time all patients on warfarin were in the target INR therapeutic range. Those patients with the best and the worst values for time in therapeutic range (TTR) were then compared.


Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease Extension Project, 2005–2009: Final Report

The Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease (ABCD) Extension project was an action research project designed to improve the quality of services for the prevention and management of chronic disease among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people across Australia. This report draws on analyses of data from use of the quality improvement tools in health centres from 2005 to 2009; data from community survey tools; report templates; and purposively structured dialogue and in-depth interviews with implementers and other key informants.

Central Northern Adelaide Health Service Family and Community Healing Program: Evaluation report 31 March 2008

The Family and Community Healing (FCH) Program aims to develop effective responses to family violence that address the levels of complexity within Aboriginal families and communities in the Central Eastern/Western metropolitan region of Adelaide. Strengths of the Program include evidence based design, holistic approach, clinical focus, committed staff, inter-sectoral linkages, peer support, mentoring, and Aboriginal cultural focus.

Childhood Anaemia – Knowledge and resource development project

Childhood anaemia is a growing concern in the Northern Territory as 22 per cent of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children under four years old are reported to be anaemic. Childhood anaemia can have detrimental effects on physical and cognitive development in the early years and has long‐term implications for the development of chronic diseases later in life. Consultations with service providers and policy makers identified childhood anaemia as a key area for investigation.

Chronic Condition Management Strategies in Aboriginal Communities: Final Report 2011

The ‘Chronic Condition Management Strategies in Aboriginal Communities’ project (2008-2011) aimed to evaluate, and where possible develop and demonstrate effective and transferable chronic condition management strategies, and to generate research evidence about their processes, impacts and health outcomes.

Clients’ Perception of the Quality of Care (CPQOC) – Monitoring and Feedback Project

Nationally, there has been a growing interest in how to document and learn from consumer feedback in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care, and this interest has been heightened by accreditation requirements about consumer input. The Clients’ Perception of the Quality of Care (CPQOC) Monitoring project gathered feedback on the support that health services might require to collect community perspectives and incorporate them into their quality improvement activities.

Comprehensive Primary Health Care, Health Systems and Workforce Program

The Comprehensive Primary Health Care, Health Systems and Workforce Program was one of five programs of the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health (2003–2009)

Program goal

The goal of the Comprehensive Primary Healthcare, Health Systems and Workforce (CPHCHSW) program is to improve the performance of health systems with a particular focus on comprehensive primary healthcare services in order to maximise health gains for Aboriginal people.

Continuous quality improvement (CQI) initiatives

The Lowitja Institute National Conference on Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care: 'CQI for everyday and everybody', was held in Alice Springs on 14–15 May 2012. Dr Noel Hayman (Australian Queenslander of 2010) officially opened the event.

CQI Conference 2014 – Abstract submission

Abstracts are no longer being accepted.


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