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Rural health celebrates strategy launch

Rural health celebrates strategy launch

Press Release Issued by Rhānz for Immediate Use, August 8 2014

The Rural Health Alliance Aotearoa New Zealand (RHĀNZ) has achieved a milestone by launching its Strategy for Healthy Rural Communities. RHĀNZ is a first for New Zealand, bringing together multiple rural sector organisations with a focus on rural health.

“Rural problems are tomorrow’s regional problems” says RHĀNZ Chairperson, Dr Jo Scott-Jones. “We seek to address these problems by unifying the sector, understanding the issues and tackling them directly with stakeholders.”

The priorities identified by members as being the most important to the health and wellbeing of rural communities are: health status; service and funding models; workforce and sustainability.

Dr Jo Scott-Jones says that “it is in the interests of the whole country that the next Government starts to address the issues identified. Rural Aotearoa New Zealand is the heart of our country, it is vital for our economy, it is the focus of our leisure, and central to our national identity. We all depend one way or another on sustained services in rural communities, whether we are living and working rurally, visiting or just passing through.”

“The next phase of work is to operationalise the Strategy and we will be working hard with members, Government departments and industry to make the strategy a reality,” says Dr Scott-Jones.

ENDS

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