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The overarching cultural context of the brain injury survivor, particularly that related to minority peoples with a history of colonisation and discrimination, has rarely been referred to in the research literature, despite profoundly influencing a person’s recovery journey in significant ways, including access to services. This study highlights issues faced by Australian Aboriginal traumatic brain injury (TBI) survivors in terms of real-life consequences of the high incidence of TBI in this population, current treatment and long-term challenges.
A case study approach utilised qualitative interview and file review data related to five male Aboriginal TBI survivors diagnosed with acquired communication disorders. The five TBI survivors were from diverse areas of rural and remote Western Australia, aged between 19 and 48 years at the time of injury, with a range of severity.
Common themes included: significant long-term life changes; short-term and long-term dislocation from family and country as medical intervention and rehabilitation were undertaken away from the person’s rural/remote home; family adjustments to the TBI including permanent re-location to a metropolitan area to be with their family member in residential care; challenges related to lack of formal rehabilitation services in rural areas; poor communication channels; poor cultural security of services; and lack of consistent follow-up.
Discussion and Conclusion:
These case reports represent some of the first documented stories of Aboriginal Australian TBI survivors. They supplement available epidemiological data and highlight different contexts for Aboriginal people after TBI, contributing to an overall profile that is relevant for rehabilitation service planning.
In 2004, a set of validated guidelines for school bullying prevention and management was released by the Child Health Promotion Research Centre in Australia to guide schools' action to prevent and manage bullying behaviours. At this time little was known about cyber and other forms of covert bullying behaviours. These guidelines were updated in 2010 to include current research that provides a greater understanding of all forms of bullying behaviour. This article describes a summary of the current empirical evidence used to update these guidelines particularly related to relatively new and emergent forms of bullying, such as cyberbullying. Meta-analyses and reviews that assessed the effectiveness of school-based bullying interventions were examined to inform the relevance of the previously validated guidelines and to identify potential intervention strategies to reduce cyberbullying. This review confirmed the importance of a systematic whole-school approach to effectively prevent and manage all forms of bullying behaviours in schools (including cyberbullying) and the need to strengthen capacity supports to enable schools to put evidence into informed practice.
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