Managing long-term illness can be difficult and stressful. People who have more than one chronic condition often need care from different types of health and specialist services, which can be overwhelming. Our flagship Integrated Team Care (ITC) program helps Aboriginal people to better coordinate the management of their chronic condition and improve their access to support and other services.
Boab Health delivers the ITC program in the Kimberley. They support Aboriginal people with complex chronic care needs to improve self-management of their condition in partnership with their GP. Theses client stories demonstrate the positive impact this service is having in the Kimberley.
An ITC care coordinator in the East Kimberley recently met with a new client, responding to a referral for glasses. The care coordinator chatted with the client about her diabetes and if there was any support she may need. By the end of the conversation the client was interested in getting a referral to the diabetes educator, a podiatrist, and a dietician. A good therapeutic relationship was established between the client and ITC care coordinator who assisted with arranging appointments and attending them initially, as an advocate. The client now has a much better understanding of her diabetes, her bloods improved immensely, she is wearing her glasses.
A woman from a remote town in the Kimberley was referred to the ITC program due to obstructive sleep apnoea. She was anxious to resolve this issue, describing feeling exhausted and miserable for some time and needed support to attend a sleep study and obtain a CPAP machine. With ITC support she was able to travel to Broome, spend the night in suitable accommodation and complete a sleep study. It was rewarding for the ITC team to call and reassure her that they are there to help her access the support she needs.
Find out more about how WA Primary Health Alliance is improving the health of Aboriginal people across Western Australia.