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Keen Interest In Maori Health Outcomes

Hui Numbers Reflect Keen Interest In Maori Health Outcomes

10 May 2001

MORE than 250 people have attended four hui held in New Zealand this month to discuss the Government's draft Maori Health Strategy He Korowai Oranga.

He Korowai Oranga is a discussion document that identifies some of the key issues required to support whanau to achieve good health and wellbeing.

Deputy Director-General of Maori Health, Ria Earp has presented the draft document at a series of hui throughout New Zealand, and is pleased with the response to date. Further hui are scheduled to occur over the next three weeks.

"The large number of people attending the hui reflects a keen interest in the direction of Maori Health. This level of participation will help us to identify key areas which we can focus on to improve the health of Maori and the community's access to health services".

Ms Earp said people have responded positively to opportunities presented in the strategy to continue Maori workforce and Maori provider development. There has also been keen interest in the promotion of the District Health Board elections, and the development of Board partner relations with Maori.

"People have recognised that the strategy is a huge step in meeting the needs of the Maori community. In addition, they are pleased that the strategy acknowledges the physical needs of whanau ora, the wellbeing of the family as the main focus, and many have asked that the final strategy acknowledge the importance of traditional Maori healing practices."

Ms Earp said people have also been positive about new areas in the strategy such as a community development approach.

"This means for the first time in health policy we are looking for ways to support Maori and whanau becoming active in their own community. Building cultural strength will ultimately lead to better health outcomes."

Eighty people attended the Auckland hui. Numbers at the other three hui held so far were Northland 40, Rotorua 80 and Wellington 60. Hui are still to be held in Hawke's Bay, Wanganui, Nelson, Invercargill and Christchurch. Dates for those hui are:

Hawke's Bay, Kohupatiki Marae 10am - 4.30, 10 May Wanganui: Putiki Marae, 15 May Nelson: Whakatu Marae, 17 May Invercargill: Murihiku Marae, 24 May Christchurch: Rehua Marae, 25 May

The final draft of He Korowai Oranga, Maori Health Strategy is due for completion by December 2001 and will be followed by an implemenation plan.


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