Meet the people who make up the IOHU.


Ms Joanne Hedges

I have a protracted length of exposure to Indigenous and Non Indigenous health care sector providing me with a good working knowledge of networks, upholding respect of cultures, adapting to new practices, and initiating educational structures which also enables students to learn and develop within an environment suitable to their own pace.
My capability to listen and effectively communicate with clients is best demonstrated by achieving involvement of community in their case management as individuals; and collectively in health promotion.

Contact Joanne

Researchers and staff members

  • Governance

    University of Adelaide’s Indigenous Oral Health Unit Advisory Committee

    Terms of reference

    1. TITLE

    The name of the Advisory Committee shall be ‘The University of Adelaide’s Indigenous Oral Health Unit (IOHU) Advisory Committee’. IOHU is nested within the Australian Research Centre for Population Oral Health (ARCPOH).

    2. PURPOSE

    To provide a consultative forum that can effectively drive strategic directions and external relationships with particular reference to IOHU’s aims and objectives (Appendix I).


    3.1: Advisory Committee representatives will be appointed on the recommendation of ARCPOH management by the IOHU Director. Normal membership term shall be two years, with renewal at the discretion of the approving body of IOHU’s establishment and Advisory Committee (ARCPOH management).The composition of the Committee shall be made up of representatives from:

    1. Chair; Indigenous Community Representative (1)
    2. South Australian Dental Service/SA Health (1)
    3. Colgate Palmolive (1)
    4. Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia (1)
    5. Indigenous Dental Association of Australia (1)
    6. Australian Dental Association (1)
    7. Indigenous Health InfoNet (1)
    8. Rural/remote dental alliance (1)
    9. Northern Territory Government (1)
    10. Adelaide Dental School management (1)
    11. IOHU Director (1)
    12. Indigenous general health researcher independent from organisations set out in 3.1 (1) – (11) (1)
    13. Indigenous community representative independent from organisations set out in 3.1 (1) – (12) (1)

    3.2: A quorum of members must be present before a meeting can proceed. At least six Advisory Committee representatives, one of whom must be a University of Adelaide employee, and the IOHU representative must be present for the meeting to proceed.

    3.3: Internal or external persons may be invited to attend specific meetings at the request of the Chairperson on behalf of the Advisory Committee to provide advice and assistance where necessary. They have no voting rights and may be requested to leave the meeting at any time by the Chairperson.

    3.4: Decisions regarding recommendations to ARCPOH’s governing body concerning IOHU’s strategic directions will be made by Committee consensus.

    3.5: Advisory Committee members will cease to be a member if they:

    • Resign from the Committee

    • Fail to attend 3 consecutive meetings without providing apologies to the Chairperson

    • Resign from their employment

    • Breach confidentiality

    If the Advisory Committee member is representing an organisation, the representative organisation will be responsible for appointing a replacement. The IOHU Director will be responsible for appointing replacement Advisory Committee members not representing an organisation (3.1 (13) – (14)).


    Any vacant positions will be filled on a casual basis by the representative organisation or IOHU Director (as per 3.5) until the term of office has expired.


    The Chairperson shall be elected by the Advisory Committee members for a period of 12 months. Their responsibilities include:

    • Preparation of agenda in consultation with the IOHU Director;

    • Guiding the meeting according to the agenda and time available;

    • Ensuring all discussion items end with a decision, action or definite outcome; and

    • Review and approve the draft minutes before distribution;


    The committee secretary will be appointed by the IOHU Director. The role of the committee secretary is to:

    6.1: Prepare agendas and issue notices for meetings, and ensure all necessary documents requiring discussion or comment are attached to the agenda.

    6.2: Track actions and/or undertake any follow-up work arising from Committee meetings.

    6.3: Distribute the agenda one week prior to the meeting

    6.4: Take notes of proceedings and prepare minutes of meeting.

    6.5: Distribute the minutes to all Advisory Committee members one week after the meeting and be made available to all Advisory Committee members.

    6.6: The minutes shall be checked by the Chairperson and accepted by the Advisory Committee members as a true and accurate record at the commencement of the next meeting before being confirmed.


    Meetings shall be held once a year, where possible, in the first week of June. Each Advisory Committee meeting will run for approximately 2 hours. A special or extraordinary meeting may be called by:

    • half the Advisory Committee members;

    • an elected IOHU representative; or

    • the IOHU Director


    The Committee falls under the umbrella of, and is responsible to, ARCPOH’s Advisory Committee and Management.

    8.1: The functions of the Advisory Committee are to;

    1. Facilitate co-operation between relevant partners in initiating, developing, carrying out and monitoring measures specified by IOHU’s Aims and Objectives (Appendix I);
    2. Assist in the resolution of issues that may arise through delivery or otherwise of the IOHU’s Aims and Objectives;
    3. Assist in the development and review of IOHU research plans;
    4. Consult with ARCPOH’s management on any proposed changes to IOHU’s Aims and Objectives, or governance procedures or policies;
    5. To keep under review:

    i) developments in the field of Indigenous oral health;

    ii) the employment of IOHU staff for various projects;

    iii) funding sources and consulting opportunities;

    iv) teaching and Higher Degree Research supervision

    1. To assist in;

    i) Raising the visibility of IOHU at a national and international level;

    ii) Maintaining the scientific and ethical integrity of IOHU’s work program;

    1. Such other functions as are prescribed or agreed upon by IOHU’s Director and Advisory Committee.

    8.2: To assist in the formulation and dissemination (in appropriate languages) of policies, practices and procedures.

    8.3: The Advisory Committee may establish such sub-committees to provide advice or to assist it in the performance of its functions.

    8.4: The Advisory Committee may delegate any of its functions to a sub-committee established under subsection (8.2) or the IOHU Director.


    The Terms of Reference shall be reviewed annually. They may be altered to meet the current needs of all Advisory Committee members, by agreement of the majority.

    The above Terms of Reference for the University of Adelaide’s Indigenous Oral Health Unit Advisory Committee have been agreed to by ARCPOH management.

    Appendix I: The University of Adelaide’s Indigenous Oral Health Unit’s (IOHU)

    Aims and Objectives

    The underlying mission of IOHU is to undertake research, provide research education in Indigenous oral health that is internationally recognised to be of the highest quality and to advocate for Indigenous oral health-related issues both in the research, education and service provision arenas.

    To that end, the aims of IOHU are to:

    • continue and extend the Indigenous oral health research program and associated research education that is currently undertaken at the Australian Research Centre for Population Oral Health (ARCPOH) and in association with colleagues elsewhere in Australia and overseas;
    • extend and strengthen collaborative relationships with Indigenous oral health researchers in Australia and overseas, bringing distinguished and stimulating visitors to Adelaide and generally through ongoing interaction fostering a synergy that will increase IOHU’s scholarly output and enable capacity-building of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous staff;
    • attract postgraduate research students of the highest potential, with a particular emphasis on Indigenous students;
    • increase its national advisory role around Indigenous oral health, for example, in informing the National Advisory Council on Dental Health;
    • extend its visibility in relation to advocacy around Indigenous oral health issues, for example, labour force and dental practice guidelines.
    • maintain, increase and diversify the financial support for IOHU’s research, including necessary infrastructure