Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leadership for better health


Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people need to lead health policy and services in our communities.

A major new report, to be launched today by the Lowitja Institute, details the progress to be made when governments relinquish control, and instead, engage in strong, collaborative partnerships.

The Lowtija Institute report, called Changing the Narrative in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Research, charts 20 years of progress since Australia’s first Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) focused on this area.

“What the report demonstrates is that lasting solutions need governments to let go,” said Romlie Mokak, CEO of the Lowitja Institute.

“We need robust partnerships where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are in the driver’s seat, leading innovative reform to improve the health and wellbeing of our people”, Mr Mokak said.

The report details how a series of four CRCs, and the Lowitja Institute, pioneered a new, collaborative way of conducting health research. The approach places Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander priorities, cultures, and knowledges at the centre of the research endeavour.

Mr Mokak said the same approach is urgently needed in broader policymaking.

The report also highlights the Institute’s ground breaking research, landmark international collaborations, and its move towards financial independence.

The Lowitja Institute is pleased to confirm that our Patron, Dr Lowitja O’Donoghue, will speak at the launch, as will Pat Anderson, the Institute’s Chairperson. Indigenous Health Minister, Ken Wyatt, will launch the new report.


Media: Di Martin 0408 099 420

Cristina Lochert 0413 833 354

The Lowitja Institute is Australia’s national institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health research. Established in 2010, it is named in honour of its Patron, Dr Lowitja O’Donoghue AC CBE DSG. For more information: