Community involvement to maximise research success in Torres Strait Islander populations: more than ticking the boxes

Quigley, Rachel, Russell, Sarah G., Sagigi, Betty, Miller, Gavin, and Strivens, Edward (2021) Community involvement to maximise research success in Torres Strait Islander populations: more than ticking the boxes. Rural and Remote Health, 21 (3).

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Abstract

Context: Health research is important to effectively address the health disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. However, research within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities has not always been conducted ethically or with tangible benefits to those involved. Justifiably then, people may be reticent to welcome researchers into their communities. Genuine commitment to community consultation, the fostering of partnerships and collaborative approaches maximise successful outcomes and research translation in these communities.

Issue: Despite guidelines existing to ensure the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are met through any research involving them, non-Indigenous researchers may not be fully aware of the complexities involved in applying these guidelines. This paper explores how a team of Indigenous and Non-Indigenous researchers understood and applied the guidelines during a three-year dementia prevalence study in the Torres Strait. Their reflections on the practicalities involved in conducting ethically sound and culturally appropriate research are discussed.

Lessons learned: Having a deep understanding of the ethical principles of research with Torres Strait communities is more than just ticking the boxes on ethics approvals. Genuine community involvement is paramount in conducting research with the communities and only then will research be relevant to community needs, culturally appropriate and facilitate the translation of knowledge into practice.

Item ID: 69605
Item Type: Article (Commentary)
ISSN: 1445-6354
Keywords: community engagement, dementia, health research, Indigenous, Torres Strait
Copyright Information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence.
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2021 01:25
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420699 Public health not elsewhere classified @ 40%
45 INDIGENOUS STUDIES > 4504 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing > 450499 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing not elsewhere classified @ 60%
SEO Codes: 21 INDIGENOUS > 2103 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health > 210399 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health not elsewhere classified @ 50%
20 HEALTH > 2001 Clinical health > 200199 Clinical health not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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