David Crosbie, Community Council for Australia: How Information and Values are Changing Patterns of Health


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David Crosbie, CEO, Community Council for Australia delivered this presentation at the 2013 Social Determinants of Health conference. The conference brough together health, social services and public policy organisations to discuss how social determinants affect the health of the nation and to consider how policy decisions can be targeted to reduce health inequities. The agenda facilitated much needed discussion on new approaches to manage social determinants of health and bridge the gap in health between the socially disadvantaged and the broader Australian population. For more information about the event, please visit the conference website: http://www.informa.com.au/social-determinants.

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David Crosbie, Community Council for Australia: How Information and Values are Changing Patterns of Health

  1. 1. Values and health: its not just about the $ Social Determinants of Health Conference David Crosbie Community Council for Australia December 2013
  2. 2. Community Council for Australia • independent, non-political member-based organisation • dedicated to building flourishing communities primarily by enhancing the extraordinary work and effort undertaken within the not-for-profit sector in Australia • seeks to change the way governments, communities and the not-for-profit sector relate to one another • this includes establishing a regulatory environment that works for community organisations - not against them
  3. 3. The CCA Board • Benevolent Society – Anne Hollonds (Director) • Drug Arm Australia – Dennis Young (Director) • Good Beginnings Australia – Jayne Meyer Tucker (Director) • HammondCare – Stephen Judd (Director) • Lifeline – Jane Hayden • Mission Australia – Toby Hall (Director) • Musica Viva Australia – Mary Jo Capps (Director) • RSPCA Australia – Heather Neil (Director) • The Big Issue – Steven Persson (Director) • The Smith Family – Lisa O’Brien (Director) • Wesley Mission – Keith Garner (Director) • World Vision Australia – Tim Costello (Chair)
  4. 4. nature of poverty / disadvantage Poverty and disadvantage is about • the elderly (statistically most likely to have low incomes) • the 800,000 Australians on disability pensions (mental health accounts for over 30%) • the long term unemployed (who can’t make it across to the disability pension) • the multi generational welfare dependent (usually with compounding issues) • those in the most marginalised communities
  5. 5. money matters but: • Many who have money still do not access health services • Even when people do access health services, quality of care is often hidden behind professional protections – who you know is very important • Health literate are healthier • Some of the richest nations on earth have very poor health profiles while some of the poorest live long and fulfilling lives
  6. 6. values – acceptance?
  7. 7. values
  8. 8. strength of NFPs = values dignity respect courage pride meaning community opportunity change honesty care love hope responsibility
  9. 9. The Productivity Commission on measuring the contribution of not for profits to our community: ‘connectedness to others sense of self engagement in meaningful activity safety from harm’
  10. 10. values – mental health ?
  11. 11. inclusion?
  12. 12. During the past two weeks, how often did you feel … 1. happy 2. interested in life 3. satisfied 4. that you had something important to contribute to society 5. that you belonged to a community (like a social group, or your neighborhood) 6. that our society is becoming a better place for people like you 7. that people are basically good 8. that the way our society works makes sense to you 9. that you liked most parts of your personality 10. good at managing the responsibilities of your daily life 11. that you had warm and trusting relationships with others 12. that you have experiences that challenge you to grow and become a better person 13. confident to think or express your own ideas and opinions 14. that your life has a sense of direction or meaning to it NEVER ONCE OR TWICE ABOUT ONCE A WEEK ABOUT 2 OR 3 TIMES A WEEK ALMOST EVERY DAY EVERY DAY
  13. 13. • Flourishing “almost every day” or “every day” 1 emotional well-being + 6 positive functioning • Moderate • Languishing “never” or “once or twice” 1 emotional well-being + 6 positive functioning
  14. 14. Percent College Students Who Report Suicidality (in the past year, gave serious thought to committing suicide, made a plan to commit suicide, or attempted suicide) 40 35 30 28.3 Mental Illness 25 No Mental Illness 20 18.1 15 15.4 10 7 3.9 5 1.3 0 Languishing Moderate Level of Mental Health (Categorical Diagnosis) Flourishing
  15. 15. what we know about flourishing • The research is telling us that it is not the circumstances you find yourself in, but whether you feel valued that is the critical factor in personal and collective well being • If we extrapolate this concept of feeling valued to the broader community, it becomes clear that the fundamental values enacted within our society are the critical touchstone for wellbeing and social inclusion. It is our values that are at the heart of flourishing communities.
  16. 16. pursuit of happiness?
  17. 17. the need to challenge • we have a responsibility, a professional responsibility, a responsibility to our clients, their families, our peers, our organisations, our community • accepting this responsibility means striving to fully achieve our purpose rather than accepting imposed limitations and what we often know to be inadequate responses to our clients and our community • accepting this responsibility means measuring and validating your experiences, the experiences of your clients, their families, their community, your organisation
  18. 18. purpose and values • We need to sway and dance with the winds of change, but not let go of the purpose or the values that make us strong and effective • the most important struggle is to: 1. retain a commitment to purpose and the fundamental values of human experience, e.g. hope, community, and meaningful relationships 2. strengthen your clients, yourself and your organisation = measure and share how you achieve your purpose = be valued 3. BE AN ADVOCATE / SUPPORT ADVOCACY
  19. 19. values and change