BRHS’ Aboriginal Health Unit Lauded at Victorian Healthcare Awards

BRHS Aboriginal Health Unit team members Danielle Thomson, Lynette Bishop, Bonnie O’Shanassy and Amanda Blandford with Improvement and Innovation Advisor Julie Lawrence.


BRHS’ has been heralded for recent innovations to improve the healthcare experience for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

We received a “Highly Commended” award at the Victorian Public Healthcare Awards at the Melbourne Convention Exhibition Centre on Wednesday night, a showcase of great work happening in hospitals and health services right across the state.

The award is further recognition of the terrific work being done by our Aboriginal Health Unit (AHU), and its role in providing welcoming and culturally appropriate assistance at the hospital to make sure indigenous people get the care and information they need.

The addition of Aboriginal Liaison Officers at the hospital, initiatives such as the Geewan Scripts program, and continued efforts to identify Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients that enter the health service have all had significant and measureable successes in reducing unplanned discharges, reducing length of stays, improving patient experience, and improving health outcomes for indigenous patients.

Celebrating at the awards night in Melbourne.

The awards’ judges noted that “understanding origin and what this means helps health services plan care for better outcomes, which is vital for early intervention and prevention.”

BRHS CEO Robyn Hayles was in Melbourne on Wednesday night with AHU team members Amanda Blandford and Bonnie O’Shanassy, and Improvement and Innovation Adviser Julie Lawrence, and was thrilled to see BRHS staff recognised for this important work.

“It is great to work in a health service where all staff are committed to ensuring we provide a culturally safe environment,” she said.

To learn more about our Aboriginal Health Unit contact Bonnie O’Shanassy on or call 5150 3364.