I am delighted to let you know that on Tuesday 26 September the Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet officially celebrated its 20th birthday. Established in 1997 by former GP and public health specialist, Professor Neil Thomson, the widely used web resource acts continues to provide high quality, evidenced based knowledge and information about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health to the health sector.

Speaking at the official 20 year anniversary event held earlier in Canberra on the 13th September, was The Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP, Minister for Indigenous Health. Minister Wyatt said “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are the real winners from the HealthInfoNet, as it plays an important role in closing the gap in Indigenous health.” Guests also included Warren Snowdon, Shadow Assistant Minister for Indigenous Health, members of the HealthInfoNet advisory board, ECU Executive team representatives, partner organisations, consultants, representatives from the Australian Government Department of Health (core funder) and peak bodies and organisations based in Canberra.

To commemorate the 20th anniversary, a painting was commissioned to tell the story of the history of the HealthInfoNet and its relationships and connections across the country. Minister Wyatt unveiled the artwork by Professor Mick Adams, a well-known Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artist, researcher and academic. In addition a short film of the 20 year history and a series of timelines were also produced. See this link for further information:http://www.healthinfonet.ecu.edu.au/about/about-us-info/our-history.

This is an historic achievement for a unique resource that is not replicated anywhere in the world. That the vision of one man over 20 years ago not only continues but is flourishing is testament to Professor Thomson’s vision and to the ongoing support of many thousands of supporters, partners and users throughout Australia. Over the last year we had 3 million page views, 1 million sessions and just under 800,000 users. With a user satisfaction rate of 97% and portals dedicated to the workforce, the HealthInfoNet remains a vital part of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health infrastructure.

I sincerely thank you all for using the HealthInfoNet in your work and study over the past 20 years.

Best regards,

Professor Neil Drew
HealthInfoNet Director