101 East

Australia’s Heart Failure

101 East investigates why young Indigenous women are dying of a preventable disease in remote Australian communities.

In the remote Aboriginal community of Doomadgee in Australia’s north, the graves of children and young people are scattered throughout the cemetery.

Mainly young women, they are dying from rheumatic heart disease, a preventable condition all but eliminated from the rest of Australia decades ago.

Now their families are speaking out, revealing how their seriously ill loved ones were treated in their final days – turned away from hospitals and given inadequate care, which they say amounts to racism.

101 East investigates this hidden killer in remote Australian communities and asks why these young people did not receive the help they desperately needed.