In 2017, Royal Far West commissioned the Centre for Community Child Health to undertake a review of the health and development and wellbeing of children in rural and remote Australia.
- profiled the population characteristics of children in rural and remote Australia
- identified the current context and the developmental health needs, met and unmet, of vulnerable children and families in rural and remote Australia; and
- provided an evidence-based overview of what is causing the status quo, and what is most effective in addressing these issues.
The report emphasised the developmental, behavioural and mental health status/needs of children aged 0-12 years of age, and existing gaps in the provision of appropriate services that help address developmental needs and support children, and their families, to reach their potential.
The review presented a range of key findings covering:
- the distribution of children by Indigenous status and remoteness, across each jurisdiction
- the disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children
- the profile of children residing in rural and remote areas in each of the identified jurisdictions
- main service gaps for children and families in remote and rural Australia
- what the evidence says about ways of improving health and development outcomes for children in rural and remote Australia
- strategies shown to be effective in improving access and outcomes for children
- knowledge gaps and opportunities to improve services and outcomes.