This report by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner and the Steering Committee for Indigenous Health Equality presents the outcomes from the National Indigenous Health Equality Summit, 18 – 20 March, 2008. On the final day, at the Great Hall, Parliament House, the Prime Minister, the Hon. Kevin Rudd MP, the Minister for Health and Ageing, the Hon. Nicola Roxon MP, the Opposition Leader, the Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson MP, as well as leaders of Indigenous health peak bodies and the mainstream health peak bodies signed a historic Close the Gap Statement of Intent in which they agreed to work in partnership to achieve equality in health status and life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians by the year 2030. As a part of this effort they agreed to ensuring that primary health care services and health infrastructure for Indigenous Australians were capable of bridging the gap in health standards by 2018.
Importantly, they also committed to measuring, monitoring, and reporting on their joint efforts in accordance with a range of supporting sub-targets and benchmarks. The Indigenous Health Equality Targets and the benchmarks contained here are presented to that end. These have been developed with a range of experts, (and particularly Indigenous experts), with experience in Indigenous health.