If you can hear this, raise your hand, and your voice

filming documentary

Troy Tungai running a session with the Ngargin Doctors as it is filmed.

The Ngargin Doctors at Barrack Heights are to feature in a new documentary about the effects of otitis media (OM), commonly known as glue ear, on Indigenous kids across Australia. Government statistics suggest that up to 91 % of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are afflicted with the condition which leads to life-long deafness if not treated. OM means kids can’t hear, can’t learn, can’t get job and often get locked into chronic ill-health and even incarceration. 83% of Indigenous men in NSW prisons are functionally deaf because of untreated OM in their childhood, according to a recent government report.

The director of the documentary, Steve Pasvolsky, was inspired to produce the program after being shocked by how much this was impacting on Indigenous kids and the inadequacy of government the response. The program not only highlights the problem but looks at solutions and Steve believes that the Young Doctor program is making an important contribution.

In the recent Closing the Gap report there was no mention of the problems surrounding otitis media.

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