Nganampa Health Council (NHC) is an Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation operating on the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands in the far north west of South Australia and is home to almost 3000 residents. The Anangu culture is still strong and Pitjantjatjara/Yankunytjatjara is the first language. NHC programs include sexual health, environmental health (UPK), dental, women’s health, children’s health, immunisation, eye health and mental health.
NHC has a national reputation for best practice clinical services, collaborative program research and development, and the collection of data for ongoing evaluation. Their successes include the reduction of STIs by over 50% since 1996 and consistent child immunisation of at least 90%. Antenatal visits in the first trimester have increased by 50% since 1992. Publication of the internationally recognised UPK report in 1987. Development of the UPK program, which established nine healthy living practices that led to the provision of health hardware which has reduced rheumatic heart disease and scabies, aiding the prevention of kidney failure later in life. Improvements in the number of “well women’s” checks and the dental health of children are comparable with the rest of South Australia. They have also developed the ‘Mai Wiru Store policy’ and store councils to maintain the policy. These achievements have been widely recognised.
NHC is a well-utilised service, with over 70,000 patient contacts per year. Their clinics are AGPAL-accredited with modern equipment and sophisticated IT systems, including Communicare, telemedicine facilities and an intranet site. The main clinics are located at Iwantja (Indulkana), Mimili, Fregon, Pukatja (Ernabella), Amata and Pipalyatjara, with a smaller clinic at Nyapari. The Tjilpi Pampaku Ngura Aged Care facility is located at Pukatja, with administration offices at Umuwa and Alice Springs.