Project expanding and improving clinical care in aboriginal and Torres Straits Islander communities

Published August 20 2021 inUncategorised
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The University of Queensland is leading a project aimed at expanding and improving surveillance infrastructure for Indigenous primary health care. The project, having received a $2 million grant, focuses on preventing sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and blood-borne viruses (BBVs) in Indigenous communities.

The project intends to expand and improve the Aboriginal and Torres Straits Islander Sexual Health Surveillance Network (ATLAS). It aims to grow the size of the network to include more primary health care services and extend its focus to other preventable infectious diseases.

What is ATLAS?

ATLAS is a national online surveillance network that tracks and analyses patterns of BBV and STI testing and treatments to evaluate intentions and advise policy. ATLAS continuously uses data to improve the quality of their initiatives for its client population.

How do STIs and BBVs impact Indigenous communities?

STIs such as ChlamydiaGonorrhoea and Syphilis, and BBVs such as HIV, are common among many Aboriginal communities. STIs and BBVs are the most common conditions which affect Aboriginal people aged 15-24 and are endemic within many remote communities throughout Australia.

Though often easily diagnosed and treated, untreated STIs and BBVs can have reproductive health consequences such as infertility, miscarriage and stillbirth. STIs and BBVs can also cause long-lasting health damage such as liver disease and even cancer.

Purpose of the project

The project aims to improve patient care and support clinicians through closing gaps in data reporting and expanding services. The project will also offer data science traineeships to members of the Indigenous community to ensure that health data is controlled by the community.

Speak to Better2Know in confidence

Are you thinking about getting tested for STIs or BBVs? Better2Know can arrange an appointment for confidential testing at a clinic near you. If you have any questions regarding sexual health, contact Better2Know by phone or using our 24/7 live web chat. Our highly trained sexual health advisors will be more than happy to help you gain peace of mind surrounding your sexual health.


Mike has been delivering world class Sexually Transmitted Infections testing services to Better2Know patients around the world for over ten years. He has written extensively on the subject, including numerous blogs for Better2Know which are designed to demystify the complex intricacies of sexual health testing. Mike wants to help his readers understand the risks they take in their daily sexual lives and provide the information they need when choosing an STI or STD test in a clear, concise and understandable way. Mike is particularly interested in writing about viral STIs like HIV and Hepatitis, as these infections can have a devastating impact on people’s lives if they are not diagnosed quickly. Only through being well informed can you best care for your health, and Mike is passionate about sharing his knowledge and experience to help you and all his readers lead a happier, healthier life.