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Pacific Island appointment reflects commitment

THE HEAD of Pasifika Health, the country's largest Pacific Island health care provider, has been appointed to a senior position in the Ministry of Health.

Director-General of Health Karen Poutasi today announced the appointment of Audrey Aumua as Chief Advisor - Pacific Health.

The appointment reflects an absolute commitment to improving the health status of Pacific Island people in New Zealand, the Ministry of Health says.

"Audrey has worked extensively in and for the Pacific community, has a great track record, good networks and considerable experience in policy development and strategic planning," Dr Poutasi said.

"As well as the ability to see the big picture, essential when trying to address complex issues which require long-term commitment and solutions, Audrey also has plenty of hands-on experience and a pragmatic approach.

"I believe her appointment will assist us greatly in reducing some of the disparities in health status for Pacific Island people here."

Mrs Aumua is founder and managing director of Target Education, the executive chair of Pasifika Health, a director of the Family Start programme in West Auckland which is a unique Maori/Pacific Island joint venture and holds a number of other positions in the health, social welfare, local government and training sectors.

She is a Fijian New Zealander married to a Samoan, has lived in both those countries and travelled extensively throughout the Pacific.

Mrs Aumua takes up her position in the Ministry in February She replaces Debbie Sorenson, who continues her work in the area as General Manager Pacific Health with South Auckland Health.


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