Nurturing Noongar Boodjari (pregnant) Yorgas (women) through pregnancy
Moort Boodjari Mia (Family Pregnancy House) is a Closing the Gap project funded by the Australian Government until June 2014. Clinical services commenced in February 2011. The project aims to improve and increase access to antenatal and postnatal care to Aboriginal women and increase the provision of sexual and reproductive health education services to the Aboriginal community.
The program has been developed to meet the specific needs of the Aboriginal community. Moort Boodjari Mia operates under a shared care model providing culturally secure care to clients in the community and at their homes. Moort Boodjari Mia is predominantly staffed by Aboriginal people. Staff recognise the differing needs and ways of working with the Aboriginal community and continually work on developing a service that meets those specific needs. All staff aim to provide a high quality service to clients in a culturally safe environment.
The service works collaboratively with other specialist services ensuring the specific needs of clients are met. Taking a strengths-based approach has meant we have been able to engage clients who have resisted service involvement in the past. Moort Boodjari Mia also takes a holistic approach to health care and has found supporting clients with their own identified issues of priority is necessary, as without this they are not able to engage in conversations about their pregnancy.
Moort Boodjari Mia has an important role in educating the Aboriginal community on sexual health, conception, pregnancy and parenting. Education sessions are delivered to all antenatal and postnatal clients as well as community and school groups.
Moort Boodjari Mia is keen to share what we have learnt on delivering a culturally appropriate service that meets the Aboriginal community's needs to other workers to improve outcomes for the community on a larger scale.
Alison Gibson, Coordinator, Moort Boodjari Mia, Public Health and Ambulatory Care, Aboriginal Health Unit, North Metropolitan Health Service
Janice Reidy, Aboriginal Health Officer, Public Health, North Metropolitan Health Service