Diabetes care at the centre of Australia: grassroots care and prevention

A report on the 2010 symposium on Indigenous peoples’ health held in Alice Springs, Australia

The Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes (Baker IDI ) Institute of Australia was established in 2008 following the merger of two eminent clinical academic bodies, the Baker Heart Research Institute and the International Diabetes Institute. Baker IDI is Australia’s first multidisciplinary organization tackling the deadly trio of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease through research, education and care.
In 2007, Baker IDI established a research group in Alice Springs in Central Australia under the leadership of Alex Brown, a leading Indigenous doctor/researcher, to conduct cardiovascular and diabetes research focusing on improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. One of the key objectives of the Alice Springs facility is to provide educational activities to health and community workers involved in the prevention and management of cardiovascular disease and diabetes among Indigenous people. The authors report on one of its several projects: a symposium held in 2010 on issues such as service delivery, prevention and management to reduce the disproportionate burden of diabetes experienced by Australian Indigenous people.