About the committee

Our committee is made up of members of the community and meet every 3 months.

We have members representing each area of our diverse region.

The Consumer Advisory Committee goals

We aim to:

  • be the ears and voice of the consumers
  • work together with services and programs
  • help simplify language barriers between providers and consumers
  • find positive ways to meet consumers' health needs.

What we do

  • Give feedback on information developed by the health service for patients, carers, families and consumers.
  • Take part in recruitment panels.
  • Work with key services/programs to ensure care is person-centred and culturally appropriate.
  • Give consumer feedback for new projects/initiatives.
  • Being involved with planning and strategic reviews.
  • Give input in workforce training and education to incorporate consumer views and experiences.

How to contact a member

You can contact our engagement officer by:

If you want to join the committee or have a specific interest in health please register online.

Our committee

Chair
Wendy Phineasa

Wendy lives in Bamaga and is very interested in making it simple for residents to access our health services.

Wendy was diagnosed with borderline diabetes in 2015. Since then, Wendy has transformed her life with healthy eating, fitness and competitive body building.

As the mother of seven children, Wendy has many years of experience dealing with the hospital and primary health care centre in Bamaga.

Member
Wally Shibasaki

Wally lives on Thursday Island and has a keen interest in health, both as a consumer and as a role model in his community.

Wally works as a cultural mentor with My Pathway, and is a rugby league referee and avid sportsman.

Wally has had diabetes since 1990 and is a strong advocate for managing diabetes with exercise, sport and good nutrition.

Member
Will Luthi

Will was on the Cairns and Hinterland Consumer Advisory Group for 6 months before moving back home to Cooktown in 2017.

He has trained in Consumer and Carer Participation, which helps members of the public to understand how they can help develop, plan, deliver and evaluate health services.

He is a great role model for how to successfully manage mental illness through lifestyle choices, treatment services and social support.

Being on the Consumer Advisory Committee has been an awesome experience for me. I have travelled the Cape and visited the major centres and have got to know people from all walks of life. I have learnt much about our health system and the way it is constructed with a focus on consumer perspectives. I have given input for many projects and have given a voice to people who may not know much about our health system. It has been an enjoyable journey and I look forward to being on this committee for years to come” (Will Luthi, Mental Health Consumer Representative, Cooktown).

Member
Mariana Babia

Ait Koedal Elder Mariana is a passionate community advocate for the Outer Islands of the Torres Strait.

By shining a light on the everyday health issues communities face, Mariana looks forward to creating positive change towards better living standards, positive health outcomes and brighter futures for local people.

From her lived experience, she understands the unique needs and aspirations of Saibai, Dauan and Boigu Islands.

As a Women's Supervisor for My Pathway, Mariana values strong partnerships between communities, councils and health care providers.

Member
Beverly Holroyd

Beverly lives in Pormpuraaw. She has always been interested in health, starting with her first job as a community health worker at the age of 15.

Beverly speaks 5 different Aboriginal dialects, with English being her 6th language. She is passionate about linguistics, improving language and cultural barriers and being a conjugate between the community and the Health Service.

Beverly is a compassionate advocate for her community. She's driven to work holistically with the Health Service, her community, and other service providers, to ensure positive outcomes for her community.

Beverly would like to improve health outcomes and provide feedback to the Health Service around important issues from her community.

Member
Frances Carter

Frances has lived in Weipa for the past 12 years and has recently acquired her Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology).

She currently works as a Family Led Convenor in Napranum for Cape York/Gulf Remote Area Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Care (RAATSICC) Advisory Association.

Frances’ passions lay with holistic approaches to mental health and wellbeing, and advocating for consumers’ autonomy and control of their own health.

Frances is a youth representative who will help ensure a strong focus on health care and initiatives for young people.

Member
Lucy Wailu

Lucy is from Mer and the Director for the Piadram tribe. Lucy is a direct descendant from Ait and is very passionate about her culture and identity. She would like to see a brighter future for the younger generation.

Lucy is the coordinator for the Community Justice Group & Domestic Violence Champion and Vice President of Murray Island Women’s Group.

Having been both a patient and a carer, Lucy wants improved health outcomes for her community.

Lucy knows she can be a strong voice for her people by representing the Outer Islands, Eastern Cluster on the Consumer Advisory Committee. It's another journey Lucy is willing to take, hoping she can make a change for health challenges being faced by community.

Member
Iris Billy

Iris lives on Warraber Island which sits in the central Torres Strait Islands.

She's honoured to serve as an Indigenous voice to support the interests of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. These include education, employment and training, social justice, leadership and governance and health.

Iris believes quality and long term health care services are needed to meet the health conditions, needs, and issues of every individual.

As a consumer and carer living in a remote community, she wants to share her experience, knowledge, and aspirations with the Consumer Advisory Committee.

Iris aims to continue to influence change and improvement across the health services, and encourage other consumers experiencing health concerns and issues to share their experiences.

Member
Marcia Koolatah

Originally from Kowanyama, Marcia lives and works in Cooktown.

She has strong ties to Western Cape York and has strong personal and professional links with Cooktown and surrounding communities in Eastern Cape York.

Marcia is an advocate for people with specific health issues and would like to see more health workers, community engagement and education for preventive health care.

She's also passionate about providing home care support, including supplying ongoing health care after treatment in the home environment.

As a member of the Consumer Advisory Committee, Marcia can share her experiences, knowledge and understanding of the health services for her region. She's aiming for positive health outcomes and learning more about the challenges while contributing to positive change.

Last updated: September 2022