Indigenous child health: Are we making progress?

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Abstract

We identified 244 relevant articles pertinent to indigenous health (4% of the total) with a steady increase in number since 1995. Most Australian publications in the journal (with a small Indigenous population) have focussed on conditions such as malnutrition, diarrhoeal disease, iron deficiency, rheumatic fever, acute glomerulonephritis and respiratory and ear infections, and in settings where nearly all affected children are Indigenous. In contrast, New Zealand publications (with a large Maori and Pacific Islander population) have addressed important health issues affecting all children but emphasised the over-representation of Maori and Pacific Islanders. Publications in the journal are largely descriptive studies with relatively few systematic reviews and randomised trials. Our review attempts to cover the important Indigenous health issues in our region as represented by articles published in the Journal. The studies do document definite improvements in indigenous child health over the last 50 years.

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