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Third Progress Report on NZ Health Strategy

King releases third progress report on implementing New Zealand Health Strategy

Health Minister Annette King says the third annual report on implementing the New Zealand Health Strategy represents the face of the strategy working at national, district and local levels.

Implementing the New Zealand Health Strategy 2003 illustrates ways District Health Boards and other healthcare providers, especially Primary Health Organisations, are achieving objectives and priorities of the strategy.

“Today’s report highlights some of the local initiatives that are making such a difference in New Zealand communities. We’re developing innovative solutions to local health needs and involving communities in the planning and delivery of health services,” says Ms King.

Rapid progress has been made in the development of PHOs nationally, with more than two million New Zealanders now enrolled with the 53 PHOs.

“As a consequence more than one in four New Zealanders have access to low-cost primary health care,” says Ms King.

The 2003 report also outlines the growth of DHBs in their roles as funders and providers of health services with DHBs taking over funding for disability support services for older people this year. Population-based funding was also introduced in 2003 to fairly distribute available funding between DHBs.

Progress on implementing He Korowai Oranga: the Maori Health Strategy is also outlined in the report, including actions to enhance relationships between DHBs and Maori and to involve Maori in PHOs.

The NZHS, published in 2000, contained 61 population health objectives, with 13 chosen for implementation in the short to medium term.

Data in the 2003 report shows progress in many areas, including smoking, youth suicide and diabetes, while further concerted effort by the health sector is needed in other areas.

The report includes 20 case studies representing a few of the initiatives developed in response to challenges set by the strategy. Ms King says the sector’s commitment to fostering innovation was exemplified by this year’s inaugural Health Innovation Awards, while many capital works programmes have also progressed during the year.

“The completion of Auckland’s $447 million building programme has been a huge success for the Auckland region, for example.”

Copies of Implementing the New Zealand Health Strategy 2003 are available on the Ministry of Health website www.moh.govt.nz.

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