Black Health's long shadow
Everyone agrees that there has been a steady improvement in child mortality, but it's too early however to see what the impact of the Closing the Gap programs has been. The 2012 Report only tells us what was happening up until 2008, but funds only started to flow in relatively small amounts in 2009/10, and have built up since then. But are we ''on track'' at least as far as child mortality is concerned? Measurement of indigenous mortality is fraught with difficulties. And whether we're on track or not is not simply a question of drawing a straight line between where we are now and where we want to be some time in the future. It takes some years to roll out a program, and then there is often a further period before the impact of the program can be seen in terms of better health outcomes. So it may not be until say 2013-14 that we could be in a position to assess the early effects of major initiatives commenced under Closing the Gap.