Health Promotion & Deadly Choices

The focus of the Health Promotion Team and Deadly Choices program is to encourage community members  to access Gurriny's services and complete an annual ‘Health Check’.

Our team works across all services and programs within Gurriny and external service providers to offer health promotion/ healthy lifestyle advice and assistance to improve the health and wellbeing of Yarrabah people. 

The team is heavily involved in Community Engagement activities and supports educational and awareness strategies to partnering teams and services to reach their target audience. 

With a focus on preventative health the role of the Health Promotions team at Gurriny works hard to encourage community to not just see the doctor when they are sick but to visit the clinic on a regular basis (at least every 12 months), so that staff can build an overall picture of health, and measure changes in a client’s wellbeing.


Going smoke-free is a Deadly Choice – why?

  • Tobacco smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals – including at least 60 that we know cause cancer.
  • There are approx. 19,000 smoking related deaths each year, and smoking tobacco is the largest single preventable cause of death and disease in Australia.
  • 41% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples smoke compared to 13% of the Australian population.
  • Tobacco smoking is the largest single preventable cause of death and disease in Australia.
  • Smoking is expensive. If you smoke 1 pack of cigarettes a day you’ll spend about $10,000 per year!

Tobacco smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals – including more than 70 of which are known to cause cancer.

It's time to make the Deadly Choice to quit smoking.

  1. Smoking leads to cancers, coronary heart disease, respiratory diseases, strokes, and a range of other serious health conditions.
  2. Pack-a-day smoking costs over $10,000 per year!
  3. Smoking is the main cause of preventable deaths in Australia, causing about 15,000 deaths annually and costing Australia $31.5 billion in social and economic costs.
  4. Approximately 39% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples over the age of 15 are current daily smokers.
  5. Smoking causes 20% of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adult deaths.
  6. Tobacco kills approximately half the people that use it.
  7. Second hand smoke kills. No ventilation or filtration system can reduce tobacco smoke exposure inside houses and cars to an acceptable level. Only completely smoke-free environments are safe.
  8. There are immediate and long-term health benefits as soon as you quit smoking.
  9. Within 2-5 years of quitting, your risk of heart attack and stroke drop significantly.
  10. Quitting before you’re 30 reduces your risk of lung cancer by 90%, compared to someone who smokes throughout their life.






Deadly Choices is a health promotion initiative of the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health (IUIH).

It aims to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to make healthy choices for themselves and their families – to stop smoking, to eat good food and exercise daily. Deadly Choices also encourages our people to access their local Community Controlled Health Service and complete an annual ‘Health Check’.

By raising awareness of healthy lifestyle choices and increasing the number of Indigenous people seeking health checks, Deadly Choices has made a real difference in closing the health and life expectancy gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians