Youth Health Forum – call to action

Young leaders have released a Call to Action to promote a much stronger role for young Australians in the design of health services to meet the “missing middle” needs of teenagers and young adults in health policy.

The Call to Action seeks innovations including the creation of a youth healthcare card, a National Youth Commissioner and education in schools to promote understanding of the health system.

The call flows from the Youth Health Forum National Summit in September which brought together hundreds of advocates and young people from across Australia to discuss the health system challenges experienced by people aged 18 to 30. 

The Call to Action identified five headline recommendations for proposals to move health policy to become more responsive to the needs of young Australians.

  • Health service navigation: The creation of a secular education role to teach school age young people about health systems navigation and use, and nurse navigators within the health system to guide young people. 
  • Youth voices in governance: A National Youth commissioner, and changes to the subsidisation of mental health services and the introduction of a youth healthcare card.
  • Economic participation: Back the Raise the Rate campaign and call on the federal government to raise income support for young people.  Also call changes to the subsidisation of mental health services and the introduction of a youth healthcare card
  • Diversity and inclusion: Medical training colleges, peak medical and allied health bodies, and the Australian Medical Council to work with health consumers to establish accreditation standards for working with diverse communities. And the Introduction of LGBTQI+ questions on the census and other data capturing initiatives; and for the universal service guarantee to include mobile coverage across Australia.
  • Climate change: That the federal government address the duty of care on climate change with a national strategy on climate, health and well-being for Australia and for a strengthening of health systems in rural and regional communities in preparation for climate change impacts