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Health funding calls win Indigenous support

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 3 October 2004

A prominent Indigenous academic has supported calls by the Rural Doctors Association and the Australian Medical Association (AMA) for more funding for Aboriginal health.

Rural doctors want Labor and the Coalition to commit an extra $400 million a year to Indigenous health.

Academic Boni Robertson has sent an open letter to federal Parliament.

She says election policy statements are offensive to her people.

"You can't just marginalise part of the constituency, especially leading up to an election," she said.

"All parties should put on the table their intentions about how they're going to represent the people if they get elected and I think they've let us down."

Ms Robertson says Indigenous health issues are not being dealt with appropriately.

"A lot of the funding that has been given has been spasmodic, it's been short-term," she said.

"There's been no real long-term planning.

"Most of our people live on short-term survival.

"We can't even get into long-term planning ourselves because of the funding shortage."

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