Indigenous health worker

Indigenous Health Workers provide health care and support to patients in Indigenous communities. They should be culturally sensitive to work with Indigenous populations and have knowledge of health care practices and procedures.

Duties and tasks

  • Collaborate with other health care professionals to provide clinical services, evaluate patients needs and recommend treatment options, referring them to specialists or other services when needed
  • Educate Indigenous communities on health and hygiene practices, risk factors and new treatments and procedures for health problems
  • Educate health care workers and public outside Indigenous communities in cultural practices, sensitivities and risk factors affecting Indigenous populations
  • Evaluate the health care needs of patients in Indigenous communities and advocate on their behalf
  • Maintain and update patient records and health administration documents
  • Provide routine sterilization and cleaning of patient rooms, linens and garments and maintain personal cleanliness and sterilization to prevent infections from spreading
  • Translate between patients and other health care workers when needed to ensure understanding between patient and health care professionals

Skills required

  • Critical Thinking Skills
  • Cultural Sensitivity
  • Health Care Technical Knowledge
  • Strong Attention to Detail
  • Strong Communication Skills

Working conditions

Indigenous Health Workers typically work a weekly rotating schedule based on health or community centre operations. They may need to work evenings, early morning hours and weekends depending on the setting they work in. They work in health care and community centre's and may travel locally to conduct educational workshops.

Professional associations / Industry information

Allied Health Professions Australia (AHPA) 

Australian Association of Social Workers 

The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker Association (NATSIHWA) 

The National Coalition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Workers Association 

Related jobs and job titles

  • Alcohol and Drug Worker
  • Child Care Worker
  • Counsellor
  • Educational Worker
  • Health Promotion Practitioner
  • Nurse
  • Special Care Worker
  • Teacher/Educator
  • Welfare Worker
  • Youth Worker

Related degrees

Related subjects