(Late August 2012 – Late November 2012)
  • Collaboration with Dulwich Centre

In late August Wendy Edmondson and Dennis McDermott met, for a second time, with representatives of the Dulwich Centre, Adelaide.  An outline of a wide-ranging programme of collaborative work was identified that would draw on the combined interests and expertise  of the two centres around Narrative Therapy / mental health and well-being, conflict resolution and pan-Indigenous knowledge and its role in the academy.  In particular, Dennis McDermott is examining the feasibility of a role for the Dulwich centre within professional/team development within the Northern Territory Medical Programme (NTMP).  Additionally, visiting Maori and Samoan colleagues of the Dulwich Centre have been booked to participate in our Inaugural Aboriginal Knowledge in the Academy (AKA) seminar series in March 2013

  • Publications

Courtney Ryder has had two publications accepted for the LIME Good Practice Case Studies 2. These publications focus on the use of standardised patients to develop cultural safety in medical students along with the development of the Indigenous Entry Stream into the Doctor of Medicine. Both will be published next year

  •  Admissions and Student Support

For 2013 Poche Adelaide will welcome one Indigenous Entry Student into the Doctor of Medicine at Flinders University (Adelaide campus). Forward planning for 2014 is already underway with applications already open for intake. For more information please head to this link: http://www.flinders.edu.au/medicine/sites/medical-course/domestic-applicants/indigenous-applicants.cfm 

Courtney Ryder has also been assisting the School of Medicine with their admissions through undertaking 5 International student interviews and 3 domestic student interviews

Bevin Wilson has been assisting with the FAIMM (Flinders and Adelaide Indigenous Medical Mentoring) meetings in Adelaide.  As an original developer of the successful initiative, Bevin will travel to Darwin early in the New Year to strengthen combined support efforts for Indigenous students within the NTMP and investigate the potential adoption of the FAIMM model in the NT

Bevin Wilson is liaising with Yunggorendi First Nations Centre in a pro-active involvement with Aboriginal students from remote communities, who are currently enrolled in a number of Adelaide private/boarding schools, to create a pathway to future study within Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences courses

The inaugural BUPA Indigenous Health Scholarship was awarded to Lisa Diamond, who is in second year medicine on the Bedford Park campus.  Congratulations to Lisa!



L-R: Professor Jane Scott (Assistant Dean Allied Health Programs), Professor Paul Worley (Dean, School of Medicine), Emma Tonkin (BUPA Health & Wellness Scholarship recipient), Lisa Diamond (BUPA Indigenous Health Scholarship recipient), Daniel Gallagher (State Manager SA / NT, BUPA), Debra Webb (Corporate Account / Business Development Manager SA / NT, BUPA), Associate Professor Tim Neild (Course Director, Medicine)


  •  Service on Committees and Boards

Courtney Ryder has accepted an invitation to join the Flinders University International Centre for Point-of-Care Testing International Cultural Advisory Group. Mrs Ryder has also been a proxy for Professor Jennene Greenhill for the National Project Advisory Board addressing a needs analysis of simulated learning environments in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander primary health care training.

Wendy Edmondson has joined the board of the Aboriginal community arts/cultural organisation Murra Dreaming, located in the northern suburbs of Adelaide

  • Workshops

On the 6th September Dennis McDermott and Dave Sjoberg ran a Cultural Safety in Practice Workshop for Flinders University Health and Counselling Services.  The workshop, requested by Health and Counselling Services to equip them to better support Indigenous students at Flinders, was very favourably received.  Further workshops under currently under preparation for the Royal Flying Doctor service and Corporate Health Group (CHG)

Poche Adelaide was a sponsor of a pre-conference (Population Health Congress) workshop on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health on Sunday 9th September.  The workshop built on keynote presentations by Professors Alex Brown and Gavin Moodie, amongst others, to investigate ways to move on complex barriers to better Indigenous health outcomes.  The workshop generated an enthusiastic response from participants

Dave Sjoberg and Dennis McDermott ran a Culturally Safe School workshop for the School of Nursing and Midwifery.  This was the fourth in the series of workshops designed to support the development of an environment of cultural safety within the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.  Such an environment is central to the retention of Indigenous staff and students, as well as modelling good practice to non-Indigenous students

  • Dave Sjoberg, Bevin Wilson and Wendy Edmondson attended various elements in the pre-conference and conference programme for the Population Health Congress 2012 at Adelaide Convention Centre


  • On 11th September Dennis McDermott gave a keynote address to the Seventh Annual Mental Health First Aid Instructors Conference in Melbourne.  Also that day he presented at the Population Health Congress 2012 at the Adelaide Convention Centre
  • Over the last period, a number of staff members were involved in instituting, or further developing, relationships with potential International collaborators, most notably from Canada.  Strong relationships are expected to extend the capability of the Centre - particularly in relation to the effectiveness of our Indigenous health workforce training and the quality and uptake of our research – through building the capacity of Poche staff-members, through staff and student exchange, through sharing best practice curriculum/teaching strategies, and through collaboration on research and knowledge translation.   In a busy few months, some of the highlights of this work were:


         Dave Sjoberg, Wendy Edmondson and Dennis McDermott attended the 5th Biennial Conference of the International Network of Indigenous Health Knowledge and Development (INIHKD), in Brisbane, from 24th-28th September.  This conference enabled Poche Adelaide staff to particularly further our connections with colleagues from sister organisations in Vancouver, Victoria (BC) and Winnipeg, many of whom will be directly involved with Poche Network knowledge dissemination events in the next eighteen-twenty four months.  The conference theme was BUILDING RESILIENCE: Renewing Individuals, Families and Communities and a Conference Declaration spoke directly to enablers and barriers related to resilience: http://inihkd2012.com/.  Conference media reports involving contributions by Dennis McDermott to the themes of this declaration can be found here http://inihkd2012.com/?cat=16 (click through to News: Day Four), here http://inihkd2012.com/?p=746, and here http://inihkd2012.com/?p=737



Wendy Edmondson and international delegates between conference sessions


         Bevin Wilson from the Flinders University Poche Centre for Health and Wellbeing, attended the 6th Pacific Region Indigenous Doctors’ Congress in Alice Springs from the 3rd to the 7th of October 2012.  The Congress provides insight into Indigenous health from a national and international perspective, as well as an opportunity to maintain local academic partnerships whilst building new relationships with our international colleagues.  It has a major focus on best practice in Indigenous student recruitment and support: it was clear that the work of the combined Flinders’ Poche Centres in this regard was considered ‘leading edge’

         From late September to mid-October, A/Prof Edmondson visited Vancouver and Victoria, BC, and Toronto and Thunder Bay, Ontario. During the course of her visit she was able to meet with First Nations peoples with whom Poche staff had already begun developing relationships on a previous visit, and renew contact with academic staff and First Nations people with whom she had prior acquaintance:

·         University of Victoria (BC) – Charlotte Reading, Todd Ormiston and Jacquie Green

·         University of BC, Vancouver – Aboriginal House of Learning

·         York University, Toronto  - Dr Debra Pepler

·         Wilfred Laurier University, Kitchener – Dr Kathy Absolom




First People’s House, University of Victoria, BC, Canada

In addition, 850 participants, including 100 from Australia, attended the Rendezvous Conference – Together and Engaged - at Thunder Bay. This conference brought together the Wonca World Rural Health Conference and The Network: Towards Unity for Health annual conference, as well as the next Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM)/Flinders Conference on Community Engaged Medical Education, the Consortium for Longitudinal Curricula, and the Training for Health Equity Network. It provided a tremendous opportunity for networking and gaining new knowledge.

         Within Courtney Ryder’s seconded role, as the Acting Director of the Indigenous Transition Pathways Program for the Northern Territory Medical Program, she was given the opportunity to visit and build relationships with four different Universities in America and Canada. This was undertaken with Poche NT Chair Professor Della Yarnold and Lecturer Colleen Hayes while travelling to Thunder Bay to present at the Rendez-Vous International conference.  Courtney’s itinerary is described below to highlight the range of knowledge exchange - around teaching, cultural immersion strategies, the role of traditional knowledge and research – arising from the developing relationships:


         24-25th September – Native Hawaiian Centre of Excellence, University of Hawaii

Della Yarnold and Courtney Ryder met with Associate Professor Martina Kamaka from the Native Hawaiian Centre of Excellence along with a range of key staff. Discussion over the two days focussed on:

  •   Hawaiian Standardised Patients
  •   Hawaiian Preparation for Medicine Program
  •   Hawaiian Student Support and Advocacy
  •  Teaching and Assessment of Hawaiian Health
  •  Hawaiian Health within an Integrated Curriculum

         28th & 30th of September – Institute of Human Nutrition, Columbia University

Della Yarnold and Courtney Ryder met with Dr Richard Deckelbaum the Director of the Institute of Human Nutrition. Discussions focussed on:

  • Science remediation programs
  • Global health, USAID programs, focus on equity building and human nutrition
  • Flinders University secondment/exchange opportunities for both academic staff and Columbia University medica students.

         1st & 2nd of October – Aboriginal Student Health Sciences, McMaster University

Over this two day period, and joined by Colleen Hayes of Poche Alice Springs, the focus was a visit to Aboriginal Student Health Sciences to learn more about their Elders in Residence program to assist Flinders University in establishing a similar program across all Flinders University’s major teaching sites




Elders in Residence: (Back) Ms Colleen Hayes, Mrs Courtney Ryder, Professor Della Yarnold, Christa Jonathan (student); (Front) Elder Renee Thomas-Hill, Elder Bertha Skye (retired)

  •   Elder Bertha was one of the first Elders in Residence at McMasters University, she is from Northern Saskatchewan with a passion for traditional cooking which she use to teach health science students, along with traditional medicines. The Elders in Residence play a pivotal role in education and student health and wellbeing in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at McMasters University. The Elders have their own private office where they can undertake one on one counselling with students, but also run a range of lunch and learn session with students. All students are encouraged to meet with the Elders who are able to assist them with a variety of questions, teachings or assist students with their own cultural journey. Ms Soucy assisted with original design and development of this program, although very humble about the instrumental work she has done, she insists that the Elders are the bosses and stars of this program    

  •  During this two day period Flinders University academic staff members were fortunate enough to tour the local health service and Six Nations Polytechnic: an Aboriginal community-controlled, community-based human resource and education development centre at Six Nations Community. They also met with a range of key staff members and presented on Flinders School of Medicine’s journey on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Curricula. Discussions from both centres were extremely positive with strong relationships forming between staff members across universities. It is hoped that key staff members and Elders from McMasters will be able to travel to the LIME Connection V (conference) next year in Darwin, where Flinders University will be able to return the favour by playing host  


Six Nations Polytechnic: Bonnie Freeman (Chair – Board of Directors, Six Nations Polytechnic), Professor Della Yarnold, Mrs Courtney Ryder, Ms Colleen Hayes, Ms Rebecca Jamieson (President, Six Nations Polytechnic), Ms Danielle Soucy (Director and Program Coordinator for Aboriginal Student Health Sciences, McMasters University)

         4th & 5th October, Office of Aboriginal Initiatives & Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Lakehead University

     Following up on a specific request from the Vice-Chancellor of Flinders University for the involvement of both Poche Centres, Della Yarnold, Courtney Ryder and Colleen Hayes, now joined by Wendy Edmondson, met with a range of departments at Lakehead University, in Thunder Bay, Northern Ontario.  The Vice-Chancellors’ desire was to foster present relationships and give strength to future strategic planning between Flinders University and Lakehead University.  Departments met with during this time included:         

  •   Lakehead University Office of Aboriginal Initiatives with Yolanda Wanakamik Acting Vice Provost Aboriginal Initiatives, Leigh-Ellen Keating Director International and Tina Armstrong Director of Aboriginal Affairs NOSM.
  •  Lakehead University NOSM Curriculum and Community Engagement with Dr Roger Strasser Dean NOSM.
  •   Lakehead University Centre for Rural and Northern Health Research with Dr Bruce Minore Research Director and Dr Chris Mushquash Researcher.
  •  Lakehead University NOSM Aboriginal Health Curriculum  and Research with Dr Lisa Graves Associate Dean, Dr Kristen Jacklin Associate Professor Medical Anthropology, Dr Marion Maas Associate Professor Medical Anthropology, Dr Joyce Helmer Manager Postgraduate Education and Dr Sarah Newberry Theme 1 Chair.
  •  Lakehead University NOSM Board of Representatives of Nishnawbe Aski Nation with Rosie Mosquito and Tina Armstrong.
  •  Lakehead University NOSM Aboriginal Admissions with Dr Blair Schoales Assistant Dean Admissions, Miriam Cain Director Admissions and Learner Recruitment and Tina Armstrong Director Aboriginal Affairs.
All meetings held were valuable in sharing past experiences and future plans between both Universities. Both Universities gain strength in the vast teaching sites they are spread over to allow further opportunity and growth for their graduates. It is envisaged that a strong exchange program will be established for students in the medical program to undertake placements in their clinical year. Also, a strong exchange program will be initiated between faculty staff members: Sam Senecal, Regional Aboriginal Community Coordinator from NOSM, and his wife will be the first secondment to the NTMP
  •  On the 10th October, Dennis McDermott was an invited panel presenter at a forum of the South Australian branch of the Public Health association of Australia (SAPHAA)


  •  In October, the Poche Centre, Adelaide, participated in two meetings with the external team conducting a Review of the School of Medicine.  Staff-members also contributed to three written submissions
  • Also in October, Wendy Edmondson (as a Chief Investigator, CI) and Dennis McDermott (Associate Investigator, AI) joined an Canadian/Australian consortium submitting, to the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR), a proposal to fund a major research project looking at HIV-AIDS and Hepatitis C in Indigenous peoples in both countries.  Professor Michael Kidd is also a CI on the proposal.  If successful, the project would commence in 2013


  • Dennis McDermott participated in the National Health and Medical Research Council’s (NHMRC) inaugural Research Translation Faculty meeting in Melbourne on the 24th October
  • On the 2nd November, Wendy Edmondson represented the School of Medicine at the LIME (Leaders in Indigenous Medical Education) Reference Group Meeting, in Townsville


  • Dennis McDermott participated in the twice-yearly Indigenous Health Expert Advisory Group (IHEAG) of Medical Deans Australia and New Zealand (MDANZ) in Sydney on the 6th November
  • In November, Wendy Edmondson joined Dennis McDermott on the conference planning committee for the LIME Connection V conference to be co-hosted by Flinders University and Charles Darwin University, in Darwin, in August, 2013


  • Poche Adelaide staff-members met with Prof. Alex Brown and Ms Kathy Mott of the newly-developed South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI).  Prof. Brown is the Aboriginal health theme leader for SAHMRI and potential areas of research and training collaboration were identified.  Poche Adelaide have been invited to conduct a cultural safety workshop for SAHMRI staff early in the New Year
  •  Wendy Edmondson and Dennis McDermott attended Congress Lowitja, 2012, at the MCG in Melbourne on the 14 -15 November.  This is the conference of the Lowitja Institute, one of the leading organisations fostering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health research in Australia – and of which Flinders University is a major partner.  The congress successfully delivered on its theme of Knowledge Exchange and Translation into Practice.  Dennis McDermott was invited to give the Conference Dinner address


  •  Wendy Edmondson was proxy for Professor Michael Kidd, in his role as Advisory Board Member of the Lowitja Institute, at the Advisory Board meeting in Melbourne on the 21st November
  •  In late November Dennis McDermott met with Karin Oldfield of Flinders NT to further student support and other initiatives in the NTMP.  Dennis will visit Darwin in December to meet with new members of staff


  • On the 26th November Dennis McDermott participated in an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Forum conducted as a satellite event of the Australian Society of Medical Research (ASMR) Conference being held in Adelaide
  •  Poche Centre staff-members held meetings, in the last week of November, with Kerry Taylor of the Alice Springs-based Poche Centre to  explore possibilities for enhancing our cooperation, particularly with respect to teaching and curriculum development, joint events, research and staff support


  • Courtney Ryder, in collaboration with other Poche Centre staff-members and some external medical education specialists, re-framed our curriculum approach and teaching strategies for successfully engaging medical students in their first exposure to Indigenous health / cultural safety issues.  This freshly-structured approach was approved in late November and will be trialled with Med 1 students in April, 2013
  • After negotiation with both School of Nursing and Midwifery and the School of Medicine, agreement was reached on re-configuring some school-funded Poche Centre staff-member duties.  This re-structuring will allow the appointment of new staff without the full burden falling on Poche Centre funding.  Dennis McDermott is developing new Position Descriptions to be presented to the relevant stakeholders early in the New Year