Two new GPs stand smiling, with Newman in the background

Transforming Indigenous healthcare in the Pilbara

With access to health services a big issue for Aboriginal communities in the Pilbara, BHP is providing A$2.1 million in funding to help establish the Pilbara Aboriginal Health Alliance (PAHA). 

Our partnership with PAHA will help transform how Indigenous health services are provided in the Pilbara, by establishing new services and creating a strong voice for Indigenous health care. 

The Alliance brings together three member organisations, Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Service (Newman), Wirraka Maya Health Service (Port Hedland) and Mawarnkarra Health Service (Roebourne and Karratha). 

Through their collective expertise and community connections, PAHA has a unique understanding of Indigenous health challenges in the Pilbara. Their goal is to work towards breaking down the barriers and improving the health and resilience of Aboriginal people now and in the future.  

Wirraka Maya Health Service Chief Executive Officer, June Councillor, says the funding will make a huge difference in driving real improvements in the health and wellbeing of Indigenous people in the Pilbara. 

“It will help us identify, develop and roll out the Indigenous health services that will have the greatest impact on our communities in Newman, Port Hedland, Roebourne and Karratha. 

PAHA will also advocate for an increase in health programs and services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the Pilbara.” 

The Alliance is also building the capacity of local organisations to deliver health initiatives. 

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020-21, PAHA was instrumental in addressing vaccine hesitancy in Aboriginal communities, administering vaccines, providing personal protective equipment, additional nursing and security staff and other general outreach.