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Advising Torres Strait Islanders on ageing

A team of researchers has visited 14 islands in the Torres Strait to give advice on how to improve health there later in life.

University of Queensland School of Psychology researcher professor Nancy Pachana, who joined a team from James Cook University and Alzheimer’s Australia Queensland, said people in the region are particularly vulnerable to age-related health conditions.

“People on the islands are hungry for information but without comprehensive data health professionals are limited in the advice they can give and policy decisions are limited in their efficacy,” Pachana said. “In general, there is a demand for direction on how to improve and maintain health in later life.”

Part of Pachana’s trip involved consulting with local healthcare workers about the appropriateness of the Geriatric Anxiety Inventory – that she co-developed – for the Torres Strait population.

“[For this] you need to consult with the healthcare workers, which is specifically why I went up there – to see if the language of the questionnaire was appropriate in a Torres Strait Islander context,” Pachana told Aged Care Insite.

Click below to hear the full interview with Nancy Pachana.

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